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‘A hero’: Family member identifies man killed in a series of assaults in Edmonton


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By Daniela Germano in Edmonton

A man who was fatally stabbed in a series of random attacks in Edmonton died protecting his sister, a family member said.

Brian Berland, 38, of the Cold Lake First Nation in northeastern Alberta, died Wednesday after being attacked while walking with his sister Jamie and her dog Meatball in the Edmonton neighbourhood of Homesteader, his brother-in-law Allen Frost said.

Frost said Berland was in Edmonton to visit family.

“Brian Berland is a hero. My wife Jamie and Brian were out walking our puppy and the attacker came out of the nearby bushes and started to stab Brian,” Frost said in a Facebook message Thursday to The Canadian Press.

“Brian yelled to Jamie to run. As she was running away, she dropped our puppy’s leash and he took off as well and is still missing.”

Frost said his wife wasn’t physically harmed, but police have said two other people were injured in the attacks.

Frost said the family was to hold a vigil for Berland at the crime scene Thursday evening.

A suspect, whom police identified as 25-year-old Clarence Lawrence, was taken into custody Wednesday more than two hours after authorities warned the public about the attacks.

Lawrence was arrested in an area about two kilometres from where Berland was killed.

The assaults, Edmonton police said, are believed to be random in nature.

Authorities have not provided details on whether Lawrence is facing any charges or if charges are pending.

Edmonton police are expected to give an update on the case Thursday afternoon.

Police Chief Dale McFee said Wednesday on Twitter that many in the community were left shaken after the attacks.

“My condolences to the family of the victim, and my prayers to those injured,” he wrote.

Mayor Amarjeet Sohi also took to Twitter to thank the police “for their hard work in keeping Edmontonians safe and informed.”

“I am heartbroken to hear that one person has lost their life and two others have been seriously injured,” he tweeted Wednesday.

“My thoughts are with everyone affected by this tragedy.”

While police were searching for the suspect Wednesday, they warned residents, pedestrians and motorists to avoid the northeast neighbourhood of Homesteader, near Hermitage Road and Henry Avenue. They said officers were looking for a man with an “edged weapon.”

Residents were also advised to shelter in place. Four Catholic schools, four public schools and at least one daycare in the area were on alert as a precaution, meaning the exterior doors were locked.

Dave Olechow said Wednesday he was driving in the area when he saw a man running down the street, yelling at another man and woman walking with a small dog.

He said he continued driving and did not see anyone get stabbed.

At the crime scene later in the day, Olechow said he spoke to police about what he saw.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 8, 2022.

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Leslyn Lewis’s former campaign manager to help Alberta Premier Danielle Smith in 2023

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Ottawa – The man who ran Leslyn Lewis’s campaign as she made two consecutive bids to become the federal Conservative leader is off to help Alberta Premier Danielle Smith try to win a provincial election in 2023.

Steve Outhouse confirms he will serve as campaign manager for Smith and the United Conservative Party when Albertans go to the polls next spring.

Outhouse is well known in Conservative circles and was Lewis’s campaign manager during the federal party leadership contest this year, which Pierre Poilievre won handily.

Lewis is a member of Parliament in rural Ontario who enjoyed the backing of the party’s social conservative base during her leadership runs in 2020 and 2022.

Smith will face off in the next election against a former Alberta premier, NDP Leader Rachel Notley.

After taking over the UCP leadership following Jason Kenney’s resignation, Smith vowed to push back against Ottawa, beginning with her controversial sovereignty act.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 9, 2022.

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Future of Energy is Here – Province of Alberta pitches Alberta and Albertans at 2022 Energy Council conference

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Alberta’s Energy Minister Pete Guthrie is making a powerful presentation to state and provincial legislators from across the United States and Canada at the Energy Council’s Global Energy and Environmental Issues Conference in Banff.  

It’s a convincing pitch on behalf of energy workers, and Alberta taxpayers who rely so heavily on the province’s most lucrative industry.  The presentation is boosted by this video profiling Alberta’s stable, abundant and environmentally responsible energy supply.  

Energy Minister Pete Guthrie issued the following statement on Alberta’s energy sector at the 2022 Energy Council conference:

“Energy matters now more than ever. This year, we’ve seen how geopolitical events and volatile energy markets can impact the lives of people throughout the world. It matters where the energy that powers our homes, our economies and our lives comes from.

“The world needs a solution for long-term energy security that is also responsible, reliable and affordable. That solution is Alberta.

“It’s in this spirit that Alberta is proud to host the Energy Council’s Global Energy and Environmental Issues Conference in Banff. We are promoting our energy sector to more than 160 participants – including state and provincial legislators from the United States and Canada.

“During the conference, we will focus discussions on the future of the energy industry, the strength and security of the North American energy system and the role Alberta has to play.

“Alberta is the global leader in responsible energy development that the world needs. We have the innovation, technology and expertise needed to produce responsible energy. We have the highest human rights, labour and environmental standards. We have Canada’s fastest-growing renewable energy sector. On top of all that, we are rapidly developing carbon capture and storage and lowering emissions, with the Pathways Alliance targeting net zero by 2050.

“Our government firmly believes Alberta is the key to energy security for North America and the world. Our track record speaks for itself.  Last year, about 62 per cent of the crude oil imported to the United States came from Alberta – that is 10 times more than their oil imports from Saudi Arabia, and over four times more than all of OPEC. Every barrel that comes from Alberta helps replace one produced by countries that do not adhere to our high environmental and social standards. Our province has one of the largest oil reserves in the world, and we are ready to supply nations around the world with our reliable and responsibly produced resources.

“Alberta’s support of research and innovation excellence ensures that innovators can continue to make groundbreaking discoveries, commercialize game-changing emissions-reducing technologies and solve some of the industry’s biggest challenges.

“The future of energy is here. It’s Alberta.”


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