by Phil Ambroziak

The mayor of Green Lake applauds efforts taken by the RCMP to ensure public safety during a recent firearms incident.

“Situations like this do happen,” noted Ric Richardson with regard to the Aug. 6 standoff that led to three arrests, a search for a missing suspect and a sense of concern throughout the community. “While I don’t know too many of the particulars, Green Lake council will be sitting down with the RCMP to discuss things further. In light of situations across Canada, including the shooting in La Loche (from earlier this year), I am very supportive of the decisions and actions of the police to ensure the safety of all parties involved.”

Saturday around 4:45 a.m., members of the Green Lake and Meadow Lake RCMP detachments responded to a call of a firearm being discharged within the village. Investigation revealed three individuals related to the complaint were possibly inside a residence on the 100 block of Mill Avenue. There was the potential the individuals had access to firearms and, as a precaution, the RCMP Emergency Response Team and Police Dog Services were called to assist. In addition, Highway 55 was blocked and four nearby residences were evacuated for safety reasons during the incident.

“In total, Meadow Lake responded with seven members, including our GIS member,” explained Meadow Lake RCMP Cpl. Ryan How. “Meadow Lake officers were instrumental in the containment and eventual safe arrests of the suspects along with members from Big River, Beauval and Loon Lake detachments helping out the Green Lake officers. Local constables worked the night before, through the day, and again into their scheduled night shifts, some in some very hot and difficult positions maintaining the safe perimeter.”

How went on to say the reason for closing Highway 55 to traffic was for safety reasons.

“Based on our assessment of the scene and the proximity to Highway 55, the highway was shutdown for a period of time,” How reiterated.

Green Lake RCMP Cst. Brett Scherlie echoed this.

“The highway was blocked simply because we didn’t want anyone to drive through our scene,” he said.

Scherlie also said there were no injuries to RCMP members or members of the public, and, in total, police were on scene for 10 hours.

At 10:45 a.m., the first adult male was arrested without incident at a residence on the 400 block of Beaver Road in Green Lake in relation to the incident. Then, at 1 p.m., two adult males exited the residence on Mill Avenue and were arrested without incident. One of the males arrested will not face charges in relation to this matter.

Among those arrested was 20-year-old Austin Lafond of Green Lake. He is charged with the following: two counts of  careless use of a firearm/weapon/ammunition; two counts of pointing a firearm; three counts of possession of a prohibited weapon for the purpose of committing a crime; two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm; two counts of assault with a weapon; one count of mischief under $5,000 and two counts of failing to comply with an undertaking.

Also arrested was 22-year-old Aaron Roy of Green Lake. He is charged with: two counts of careless use of a firearm/weapon/ammunition; two counts of pointing a firearm; two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm; three counts of possession of a prohibited weapon for the purpose of committing a crime; two counts of assault with a weapon; one count of mischief under $5,000; one count of possessing a weapon contrary to prohibition order; one count of failing to comply with a probation order; three counts of failing to comply with an undertaking.

Lafond and Roy made their first appearance in Meadow Lake Provincial Court Aug. 8. Their next appearance is set for Aug. 29. The third male was released and will appear in court on unrelated charges at a later date.

Meanwhile, 27-year-old Corey O’Neil Bouvier of Green Lake remained at large until Aug. 9 when he voluntarily turned himself over to police. He faces the following charges: two counts of careless use of a firearm/weapon/ammunition; two counts of pointing a firearm; three counts of possession of a prohibited weapon for the purpose of committing a crime; two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm; two counts of assault with a weapon; one count of mischief under $5,000.
Bouvier is scheduled to appear in court today (Aug. 11).

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