Connect with us

Alberta Sheriffs Branch

ASIRT releases results of investigation into “unjustifiable use of force” by Red Deer RCMP member


7 minute read

News release from the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT)


Circumstances Surrounding the Incident

On June 4, 2020, witness officer #1 (WO1) attempted to stop a white Lexus GS300 in Red Deer for improper window tint at approximately 1 p.m. The affected person (AP), who was driving the Lexus and was prohibited from driving at that time, did not stop and instead drove off at high speed. WO1 did not pursue the AP but passed along the vehicle description to other officers.

Over the next 40 minutes, WO1 and other officers attempted to stop the AP. The AP left and re-entered Red Deer. At one point, a spike belt was used successfully and one of the Lexus’ rear tires was deflated. The AP continued to not stop for police and drive dangerously inside the city.

At approximately 1:50 p.m., the SO began following the AP. The SO was a K9 officer and had a police service dog with him. The AP continued from the residential area into the McKenzie Trails area, which is a park. The AP continued to drive very fast and dangerously. When the AP reached a dead end on a road, he drove through the trees onto another adjacent roadway. The SO continued to closely follow the AP to attempt intentional vehicle contact and stop the AP.

The AP then accelerated again and went off the road and into the grass briefly. He was unable to make the next turn and hit rocks along the outside of the turn. He continued off the road into light trees and passed over a pedestrian walkway with the SO following. He then hit a log, stopped, and immediately got out of the vehicle (Figure 1).

Figure 1 – SO’s vehicle video showing the AP exiting his vehicle.

The AP started to run away from the SO (Figure 2).

Figure 2 – SO’s vehicle video showing the AP running away.

The SO continued forward, turned slightly to the left, and hit the AP on the front passenger side (Figure 3).

Figure 3 – SO’s vehicle video showing the AP being hit.

The time from the AP’s first foot being on the ground to the SO striking the AP is approximately 1.5 seconds.

The AP then briefly disappears to the passenger side of the SO’s vehicle. He then runs away from the SO in the same direction. The SO released his dog and he and the dog ran after the AP.

The dog caught up to the AP first and bit the AP’s clothing. The AP and the dog went into the river. The SO and witness officer #2 (WO2) caught up to them and saw that the AP was in fast-flowing deep water. WO2 jumped into the river and brought the AP out.

The AP was then arrested.

Emergency medical services paramedics treated the AP. According to their medical records, the AP told them that he had broken his ankles when he was running from police and stepped in a hole.

Affected Person (AP)

ASIRT investigators interviewed the AP on October 15, 2020. He stated that, when the SO hit him, he flew six feet into the air and his ankles were broken from the collision.

Subject Officer (SO)

ASIRT investigators interviewed the SO on September 9, 2020. This statement consisted of a written statement and follow-up questions. The SO provided a full account of the incident, with the most relevant portions summarized below.

The SO, just prior to the AP stopping, was trying to get into position to intentionally contact the AP’s vehicle and stop him. When the AP stopped, he intended to contact the vehicle and prevent the AP from moving further. The AP then exited the vehicle and he turned to the left to avoid him. As he brought his vehicle to a stop, he unintentionally contacted the AP.


If the SO intentionally contacted the AP with his vehicle, it would likely be an unjustifiable use of force. When a police officer contacts a person with their vehicle, the likelihood of grievous bodily harm or death is high since the person may be run over or knocked to the ground forcefully.

In this incident, however, there is insufficient evidence to conclude that the SO intentionally contacted the AP with his vehicle. The video from the SO’s vehicle shows that the time from the AP putting a foot down to the AP being hit was 1.5 seconds. During this time, the SO was turning away from the AP.

The AP’s evidence was embellished. He did not fly six feet into the air, and his claim that his broken ankles were caused by the collision are contradicted by him telling paramedics that day that he broke them stepping in a hole.


On June 4, 2020, the AP was driving dangerously in Red Deer. He then drove into a park to evade police and drove in a manner that risked the lives of park users. When his vehicle finally stopped, he began to run and was struck by the SO. There is insufficient evidence to conclude that the SO intended to hit him.

Given that there is insufficient evidence, there are no reasonable grounds to believe that an offence was committed.

Original signed June 27, 2024
Matthew Block
Assistant Executive Director

Todayville is a digital media and technology company. We profile unique stories and events in our community. Register and promote your community event for free.

Follow Author


New surveillance teams led by the Alberta Sheriffs working with local police in rural communities

Published on

More boots on the ground to fight rural crime

Rural crime continues to be a top concern among residents and businesses in rural Alberta, which is why Alberta’s government remains committed to addressing it through enhanced surveillance and other crime reduction initiatives. Alberta’s government invested $4.3 million for the Alberta Sheriffs to put more boots on the ground. This investment supported the establishment of two plainclothes teams – one in northern Alberta and one in southern Alberta – to support police in carrying out surveillance on criminal targets in rural areas.

Both teams are now fully staffed and operational, ready to fight crime in rural areas across Alberta. These rural surveillance teams will work to prevent crime, monitor agricultural theft and work in collaboration with local law enforcement to share intelligence and resources to keep Albertans and their property safe and secure.

“Criminals and organized crime are not welcome in Alberta. Full stop. The addition of two new surveillance teams will further support our law enforcement partners in stamping out criminal activity in Alberta’s rural areas. This is about supporting local investigations to address local crime in our smaller communities. Together, both teams will form another key component of Alberta’s efforts to combat crime and ensure Albertans feel safe at home and in their communities, regardless of where they live.”

Mike Ellis, Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services

The Alberta Sheriffs have an existing surveillance unit that is part of the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) and focused mainly on serious and organized crime investigations. The new surveillance teams will fill a gap by helping rural RCMP detachments with local investigations.

“Through their specialized knowledge, training and experience, Alberta’s new surveillance teams are providing another important mechanism in the fight against crime in Alberta’s rural communities. Working in close collaboration with the RCMP and other policing agencies, their efforts will play a key role in gathering evidence and information that will help disrupt crime throughout the province.”

Mike Letourneau, superintendent, Alberta Sheriffs

“This announcement by the Alberta government and Minister Ellis is a positive step forward for the residents of Alberta, especially in rural areas. Targeting known criminals is a very effective way to reduce the level of crime taking place and will greatly assist the RCMP who have a vast area to police.”

Lance Colby, mayor, Town of Carstairs

“We are happy to hear about increased resources being allocated to assist our communities. Addressing rural crime is one of the top priorities of the Alberta RCMP, and our partners at the Alberta Sheriffs already play a vital role in keeping Albertans safe. The creation of these new surveillance teams will help augment our ongoing crime reduction strategies in Alberta communities, and we look forward to working with them going forward.”

Trevor Daroux, assistant commissioner, criminal operations officer, Alberta RCMP

The new surveillance teams are part of a suite of measures to expand the role of the Alberta Sheriffs and make Alberta communities safer. Other actions include the expansion of the Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) unit – which uses legal sanctions and court orders to target problem properties where illegal activities are taking place – and the expansion of the RAPID Response initiative with funding for the Sheriff Highway Patrol to train and equip members to assist the RCMP with emergencies and high-priority calls.

Related news


Continue Reading

Alberta Sheriffs Branch

Crown appeal against acquitted peaceful protestor Evan Blackman back in court June 19

Published on

News release from the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms announces that a hearing date for Evan Blackman’s summary conviction appeal has been set for June 19, 2024. The hearing will take place at the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Ottawa.

The Crown’s evidence against Blackman at his trial consisted of a 14-minute drone video, with no sound, and the testimony of one officer from the scene. For nine minutes of that video, Blackman is seen as part of a group of protestors standing across from a line of police officers on Rideau Street in downtown Ottawa. Blackman is shown de-escalating the situation by holding other protestors back and putting his hand up to stop them from confronting the officers. He is then seen kneeling in front of police for the five minutes prior to his arrest. At one point, while on his knees, he takes off his hat, puts his hands on his chest, and starts singing Canada’s national anthem.

The Ottawa Crown Attorney’s Office is appealing Blackman’s acquittal on charges of mischief and obstructing the police relating to his participation in the Freedom Convoy protests, specifically on February 18, 2022, the day police conducted an “enforcement action” – clearing Ottawa city streets following the invocation of the Emergencies Act by the federal government four days prior.

Blackman was acquitted after a one-day trial on October 23, 2023. The Justice Centre provided lawyers for Blackman’s defence at that trial and continues to support him throughout this appeal.

At trial, Mr. Blackman pled “not guilty” to all charges. The judge dismissed the case against him due to limited evidence and the poor memory of a police witness on key elements of the criminal offenses.

After his February 18, 2022 arrest and release the same day, Blackman discovered his three bank accounts had been frozen pursuant to the Emergency Economic Measures Order.

Chris Fleury, lawyer for Blackman, notes that if his client had been convicted, his intention was to bring an application for a stay of proceedings under section 24(1) of the Charter, seeking a remedy for the freezing of Mr. Blackman’s bank account. If Mr. Blackman’s acquittal is overturned on appeal, he intends to file this application.

Chris Fleury says, “The limited evidence available at Mr. Blackman’s trial showed Mr. Blackman attempting to de-escalate a volatile situation between police and protestors on February 18. He pled not guilty to the criminal offences that he was charged with, and the trial judge ultimately agreed and found him not guilty. This appeal is an attempt by the Crown to reframe findings of fact that they disagree with as legal errors. Mr. Blackman and I are looking forward to our day in Court at the appeal hearing.”

Continue Reading