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Red Deer Shooting, Severe T-Storm Watch, Gospel Music Celebration

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3:42 pm – Penhold Fire crews were called out to a potential gas leak at an apartment building on Fleming Avenue around 1:30 pm Thursday afternoon. Five people were evacuated but were eventually allowed to go back in once there were no H2S readings confirmed.

3:32 pm – Wetaskiwin RCMP are investigating a stabbing that resulted in the suspects from Maskwacis fleeing from police and driving into the side of a brick building. A 32-year-old Wetaskiwin man sustained two stab wounds to his back. Read More.

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3:29 pm – An Order in Council at the Alberta Legislature on Wednesday, July 12th, dissolved the Village of Botha east of Stetttler. As a result, the former area of the village will now be designated as a hamlet and become part of the County of Stettler No. 6, effective September 1, 2017.

3:22 pm – Alberta Government officials say a private courier’s van was stolen on June 23rd that had mail to be delivered in Red Deer. Read More.

3:17 pm – Lacombe County and the Town of Blackfalds celebrated the official commissioning of the new Rescue / Pumper unit Wednesday night and invited the community to get a close-up look at the new fire truck. Read More.

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12:01 pm – The Town of Sylvan Lake is hosting a fun and unique event this August Long Weekend. Are you brave enough to take part? Read More.

11:39 am – Check out the Blackfalds Community Market at the Multi-Plex Arena Parking lot today from 4 – 7 pm! Read More.

11:18 am – Due to repeated misuse and vandalism, the Burnt Lake Recycling Facility will be closing. If you wish to drop off your recycled goods you may do so at the Horn Hill Waste Transfer Station. Read More.

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10:56 am – Minister of Alberta Agriculture and Forestry Oneil Carlier will address the delegates of the Agriculture Service Board at a Pancake breakfast in Olds on Friday, July 14th. The 2017 ASB Tour is a jointly hosted tour of innovative agriculture in Red Deer County and Mountain View County. The tour began July 11th and wraps up on July 14th. It includes tours of various farming operations and tourism locations in both counties, as well as impressive ag-related demonstrations and discussions at Olds College. Hundreds of Ag Service Board delegates from across the Province will be in attendance during the 4 day event.

10:44 am – Alberta Agriculture and Forestry has deployed 125 firefighters and support staff, five air tankers, two birddog planes and 3,000 lengths of hose to British Columbia to help with the wildfire efforts. Also, Alberta RCMP are sending 40 members from the Special Tactical Operations unit. Read More.

10:36 am – More than 350 Alberta Health Services (AHS) ground ambulances will soon be equipped with power stretchers and load systems to help reduce injuries for paramedics. Read More.

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10:30 am – A Severe Thunderstorm Watch has been issued for the Red Deer Region today. Details Here.

10:25 am – Red Deer RCMP are investigating a targeted shooting that sent a man to hospital with a gunshot wound to his leg, and are looking for public assistance to identify the two men who dropped him off at the hospital shortly before 8 pm Tuesday night. Read More.

10:20 am – A Red Deer man faces charges after he assaulted a Community Peace Officer in downtown Red Deer Wednesday evening, fled on foot and was located after a police dog track. Read More.

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10:06 am – The Bard on Bower returns for it’s 7th season of live Shakespearean Frolic tonight! Read More.

9:58 am – Sunshine and live tunes on the Ross Street Patio today! Enjoy, you deserve it! Details Here.

9:46 am – A Canadian Gospel Music Celebration gets underway at Red Deer’s Westerner Park today for the next three days! Details Here.

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9:38 am – Lots of construction throughout Red Deer today. Avoid the traffic delays by knowing where the current road closures are!

9:30 am – Some parts of Red Deer’s Westpark neighbourhood have Boil Water Advisories in place today, including some addresses on Welton Crescent and Waghorn Close. Read More.

9:25 am – Air Quality Advisories remain in place for areas to the west and north of Red Deer today, while some areas to the south are under Heat Warnings. Read More.

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Biden to name Asian American-Pacific Islander liaison

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WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden will name Erika Moritsugu, a Capitol Hill veteran and vice-president of a women’s rights advocacy group, as his liaison to the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, according to two sources familiar with the decision.

Biden committed to creating a senior-level role focused on the AAPI community after he received criticism from Democratic Sens. Tammy of Duckworth of Illinois and Mazie Hirono of Hawaii for the lack of Asian American and Pacific Islander representation in his cabinet. The two senators threatened to hold up his nominees unless Biden remedied the situation, but reversed their stance after the White House said it would create the position.

Katherine Tai, who is Taiwanese American, is in the Cabinet as Biden’s top trade envoy. Dr. Vivek Murthy, the son of Indian parents, was confirmed Tuesday as surgeon general, a sub-Cabinet position. And Vice-President Kamala Harris is of Indian-American descent as well. But the senators expressed concerns that they had no direct liaison within the White House to make their concerns heard.

Biden is set to meet with the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus at the White House on Thursday, though Moritsugu is not expected to attend, according to two sources granted anonymity to speak freely about internal discussions.

Moritsugu is the vice-president for the National Partnership for Women & Families, and prior to that held a number of roles on Capitol Hill, working for Duckworth, former Sen. Daniel Akaka of Hawaii and the Senate Democratic Policy Committee under former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. She also served in the Obama administration as an official at the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The pick comes as the Senate has taken up legislation aimed at combating anti-Asian hate crimes, in the wake of a raft of violence against Asian Americans over the past month.

Alexandra Jaffe, The Associated Press

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Alberta

'We are going to proceed': Trial moving ahead for accused in Alberta doctor's death

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RED DEER, Alta. — The trial for a man charged in the slaying of a family doctor at a central Alberta medical clinic is going ahead as scheduled.

Deng Mabiour, 54, had been deemed fit last year to stand trial on a charge of first-degree murder in the death of Dr. Walter Reynolds, who was killed at the Village Mall Walk-In Clinic in Red Deer, Alta., last summer.

At his last appearance in March, Mabiour was told that a further assessment was going to be done and that he was being held on a mental-health warrant at the Southern Alberta Forensic Psychiatry Centre in Calgary.

No mention was made of the second assessment on Wednesday, but Mabiour has been transferred from the psychiatry facility back to the Calgary Remand Centre.

“We are going to proceed with this trial,” said Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Paul Belzil, who appeared by video from Edmonton.

Mabiour, wearing a blue prison jumpsuit and accompanied by two sheriffs, made his first in-person appearance in court since his arrest and sat quietly through most of the proceeding.

“Do as you want,” he said.

Mabiour, despite urging from the judge to get a lawyer, repeated his intention to represent himself at his trial, which is scheduled from Nov. 22 to Dec. 17.

“This is a criminal trial and it’s my duty to make sure you’re getting a fair trial. You’re facing a very serious charge here, sir,” said Belzil.

“I recommend that you do not do so, sir, but you have a right to represent yourself.”

The case is to return to court May 20 to discuss a number of applications, including one from the Crown pertaining to Mabiour acting on his own behalf.

“The purpose of that, Mr. Mabiour, is there’s a provision in the Criminal Code that allows the court to make an order that you not examine civilian witnesses,” the judge explained.

The accused was asked if he understood what was happening and if he had any questions.

“My question is do you believe that my case is connected with a human rights abuse case?” Mabiour asked.

Reynolds, a 45-year-old father of two, was attacked with a weapon while working at the clinic on Aug. 10. He died in hospital.

One witness told media that she was in the waiting room when she heard cries for help and saw a man with a hammer and a machete.

RCMP have said the crime was not random and the two men knew each other through the clinic, although they have not said if Mabiour was a patient of Reynolds.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 14, 2021

— Follow @BillGraveland on Twitter

Bill Graveland, The Canadian Press

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