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Future of Alberta RCMP at stake: Province wants assessment of possible transition to provincial police force by April 30


2 minute read

From the Province of Alberta

Provincial police force study moves ahead

PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) Canada will provide the government with an independent assessment of a possible transition to an Alberta provincial police service.

During the Fair Deal Panel’s consultations, Albertans expressed their frustrations with the RCMP. Concerns included:

  • The force is overly bureaucratic
  • RCMP members have a limited connection to the province
  • Members are unable or unwilling to confront activists
  • Heavy-handed enforcement of gun laws

In response, the panel recommended the Government of Alberta consider replacing the RCMP with a provincial police service.

The Alberta government supported the panel’s recommendation but committed to further analysis. This provincial police service transition study will allow the government to make an informed decision as to whether a dedicated provincial police service is in the best interests of Albertans. The study will also consider operational requirements, processes and potential costs for creating a provincial police service.

“Through the Fair Deal Panel, Albertans who are policed by the RCMP told their government that they want a provincial police service. Alberta’s government has an obligation to listen to those concerns and explore how a police force designed in Alberta – not Ottawa – would improve the safety and security of Albertans and their property. Alberta’s government must make an informed choice, and this report will bring us one step closer to the panel’s recommendation. After a federal throne speech that ignored nearly all the legitimate concerns of Albertans, this an important part of getting a fair deal for Alberta, while limiting Ottawa’s reach into the province.”

Kaycee Madu, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General

Quick facts

  • A request for proposal was used to hire a vendor to conduct the study. The budget for this analysis is $2 million.
  • PwC Canada is expected to provide a final analysis to the government for its consideration by April 30, 2021.
  • PwC Canada is part of a global network of firms that provides consulting and deals services, audit and assurance, and tax services.
  • PwC Canada’s policing and justice sector works with law enforcement and justice agencies across Canada and globally.

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Men sentenced for killing grizzly, threatening witness at Alberta hunting camp

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EDMONTON — Alberta Fish and Wildlife says two men have been fined $22,000 for the illegal killing of a grizzly bear that also led to an assault.

Officers say in a statement that they received a report about the death of the bear on Nov. 5, 2018.

The person who reported the killing also reported being assaulted and threatened.

Officers say it all took place at a random hunting camp in the Indian Graves area in southern Alberta.

An investigation determined that two days earlier the grizzly bear had been feeding at a meat pole, where the two men had hung deer carcasses they had hunted.

The investigation found that the men decided to shoot the grizzly when it returned later that evening.

“When the other campers asked why the shot was fired, the suspects told them that it was just a warning shot,” said the statement on the Alberta Fish and Wildlife Enforcement Facebook page.

“The following morning, the witness who reported the incident to fish and wildlife officers found a dead grizzly near the meat pole site.”

The witness collected evidence from a trail camera and took photos of the bear and vehicles at camp.

Officers said the men assaulted the witness when they saw him taking the photos and tried to force him to give up his cellphone password by threatening him with an axe.

“The other campers intervened and convinced the suspects to return his cellphone and let the witness go,” said the statement. “Other campers from nearby camps also witnessed the assault.”

Officers went to the scene and interviewed the suspects — one of whom confessed to his involvement in killing the grizzly and showed officers where the carcass had been dumped.

The officers collected evidence at the scene and said they found no grounds for self defence.

Jeffrey Edison Hambrook pleaded guilty in January to hunting out of season, assault and uttering threats. Gary Edgar Gilson pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of wildlife, theft under $5,000 and uttering threats.

Both men were given a one-year conditional sentence and a three-year hunting suspension.

They were fined a total of $22,000 for killing the bear and for unlawful possession of wildlife.

Grizzly bears are listed as threatened in Alberta.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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FC Edmonton names Alan Koch coach of Canadian Premier League club

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EDMONTON — FC Edmonton has hired Alan Koch as head coach and director of football operations of the Canadian Premier League club.

Koch replaces Jeff Paulus, who resigned in September.

Koch coached FC Cincinnati from 2016 to 2019 during which time the club transitioned from the United States League to Major League Soccer.

He was named USL coach of the year in 2018 when the Cincinnati topped the table with a 23-3-8 record. But the club went 6-22-6 in its inaugural MLS season.

He coached the USL’s Colorado Springs Switchbacks to a 2-7-7 record in 2020 before resigning.

The South African emigrated to Canada in 1990 for a soccer scholarship at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, B.C.

Following a pro career that ended in 2001, Koch coached his alma mater for seven seasons.

His time at SFU included four conference championships and appearances in the NCAA Division 2 semifinals in 2012 and 2013.

Koch became head coach of the USL’s Vancouver Whitecaps2 in 2015.

He was the first coach to offer Edmontonian and current Bayern Munich star Alphonso Davis a pro contract.

“I left Canada to gain additional professional experience, but am incredibly excited that this opportunity allows me to further my career while staying close to family,” Koch said Tuesday in a statement.

“The Canadian Premier League is a welcome opportunity for Canadian players and coaches, and I will work relentlessly to help FC Edmonton achieve its goals.”

FC Edmonton did not advance beyond the first stage of the summer’s Island Games with an 0-6-1 record.

The Charlottetown tournament was the stand-in season for one disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We had the privilege of talking to a lot of great candidates for the position,” FC Edmonton owner Tom Fath said.

“But in the end, coach Koch’s mix of professional coaching experience, winning track record, business understanding, and wide soccer network made him the clear choice to lead us into the future.

“We spoke extensively about everything the club needs to change in order to win. Alan understands it and is up for the challenge.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2020.

The Canadian Press

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