Update—Charges have been laid following the Wetaskiwin RCMP’s investigation into the Sept. 10, 2021 complaint involving a report of a male carrying a firearm on Highway 2A.
Following the incident on Highway 2A, Wetaskiwin RCMP transported the male, 35-year-old Abraham Harvey Whitebear of Maskwacis, Ermineskin, First Nations, Alta., to a local hospital to be treated for minor injuries.
RCMP say while in hospital Whitebear attempted to escape and was combative towards officers. Whitebear assaulted one of the police officers at the hospital by biting them.
Whitebear was not injured during this interaction although he continues to remain in the care of the hospital due to concerns for his well being.
As a result of this investigation Whitebear has been charged with the following:
• Possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose;
• Assault with a weapon;
• Obstructing a Peace Officer;
• Assault of a Peace Officer (related to the incident in the hospital);
• Unlawfully at large (related to attempt to flee from custody);
As Whitebear is not in police custody no court date has been set at this time.
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At approximately 11:45 a.m., on Sept. 10, 2021, Wetaskiwin RCMP responded to a complaint of a male carrying a firearm and walking along a major roadway near Wetaskiwin.
The male was walking southbound on Highway 2A, approximately 1.5 km south of Wetaskiwin when RCMP with the assistance of RCMP Police Dog Services located him. The suspect was not following police verbal commands to drop the firearm and the Wetaskiwin RCMP state for public and police safety, a police vehicle was used to disarm him.
The 35-year-old male suspect was provided with medical assistance by on-scene officers before being transported to a local area hospital via ground ambulance with non-life threatening injuries.
No officers were injured as a result of this incident.
The Wetaskiwin RCMP are continuing to investigate this incident with the assistance of an RCMP Collision Reconstructionist.
Southbound traffic on Highway 2A approximately 1.5 km from Wetaskiwin was being diverted with diversions expected to last several hours.
The RCMP stat that they, “[believe] in processes that seek the facts and it’s important that processes taken to assess the actions of all those involved, including the police, are fair, transparent, and defendable.”
This incident was reported to the Director of Law Enforcement of Alberta and was deemed to be in-scope and ASIRT will not be conducting an investigation. However, this incident is being reviewed by an RCMP internal review process.
There are no further details available at this time.