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Disappearance of woman, toddler treated as potential homicides: Calgary police

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  • Calgary police say they are treating the disappearance of a woman and her young daughter as potential homicides and that a suspect they have arrested knows the pair.

    Jasmine Lovett, 25, and 22-month-old Aliyah Sanderson were last seen in the suburban community of Cranston in southeast Calgary on the evening of April 16.

    They were reported missing a week later, after failing to show up for a family dinner, Staff Sgt. Martin Schiavetta told a news conference Thursday.

    He said it’s uncharacteristic for Lovett to be out of touch with her family for that long.

    Investigators looked into the mother’s social media as well as heath care, phone and banking records, he said.

    “After conducting all those searches, we have not found any footprints of life and this leads us to believe that there is no evidence to support that our victims are alive.”

    An online purchase was made from Lovett’s bank account on April 18, but Schiavetta said officers have been unable to determine whether she was the one who made it or where the item was delivered.

    Police have been in touch with Aliyah’s biological father, who is not the suspect, and he is being co-operative, Schiavetta said.

    The incident is not believed to be random.

    Schiavetta said the suspect was arrested in Cranston around 11 a.m. Thursday and knows the mother and daughter, but he would not say how.

    The suspect is also known to police, he added. No charges have been laid.

    A vehicle was seized in Cranston, but Schiavetta did not say whose it was or provide the make and model.

    He added that the only time police were called to Lovett’s home was the day after she and her daughter were reported missing. He declined to say whether anything inside the home was amiss.

    No Amber Alert was issued for Aliyah, he said, because there was no indication she had been abducted.

    Investigators are searching a home in Cranston and the area surrounding the hamlet of Bragg Creek, located west of the city, for evidence.

    Schiavetta said Lovett and Aliyah have no known connection to Bragg Creek, but that cellphone activity drew them to that location in the Rocky Mountain foothills.

    People in Bragg Creek have been asked to report anything suspicious they may have seen between April 16 and April 23.

    “Sometimes it’s the smallest piece of evidence that can assist the investigation,” Schiavetta said.

    He said many investigators working on this case also worked on the high-profile double murder of a Calgary mother and young girl in 2016. A jury found Edward Downey guilty last year of first-degree murder in the deaths of Sara Baillie and her five-year-old daughter Taliyah Marsman.

    “Obviously any investigation involving a child is extremely difficult. A lot of the members within the homicide unit have children themselves.”

    — With files from Bill Graveland.

    Lauren Krugel, The Canadian Press


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    Crime

    Police say 23 year old was supplying guns to criminals

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  • From Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team

    Straw Buyer Allegedly Sold Guns
    to Criminal Market

    ALERT has charged an alleged firearms straw purchaser with selling firearms to the criminal market.

    An investigation by ALERT Edmonton’s Guns and Gangs unit has resulted in a variety of firearms charges against Aaron Hanlen-Knight. The 23-year-old Athabasca man was arrested on May 9, 2019.

    ALERT alleges that Hanlen-Knight purchased five handguns between November and December of last year, which were then re-sold. Only one of the firearms has been recovered thus far.

    Straw purchasing typically involves someone with a valid Possession and Acquisition License (PAL) but no criminal record obtaining firearms for someone who otherwise could not, or who does not want their name associated with the transaction.

    In a search of Hanlen-Knight’s Athabasca home, ALERT did seize four other firearms, including a prohibited sawed-off shotgun.

    Athabasca RCMP and Boyle RCMP provided assistance with the investigation. The investigation began in December 2018 after the RCMP’s National Weapons Enforcement Support Team (NWEST) provided information about suspicious firearms purchases.

    Hanlen-Knight has been charged with firearms trafficking, possession of firearms for the purpose of trafficking, possession of a prohibited firearm, and firearm possession at an unauthorized place.

    Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police, or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers is always anonymous.

    ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime. Members of Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Lethbridge Police Service, Medicine Hat Police Service, and RCMP work in ALERT.

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    Crime

    Homicide Section investigating suspicious death

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  • May 21, 2019

    The Edmonton Police Service’s Homicide Section is investigating the suspicious death of a 26-year-old male that took place late yesterday.

    At approximately 10:20 p.m. yesterday, Monday, May 20, 2019, Northwest Division officers responded to the report of a disturbance in the area of 101 Street and 118 Avenue.   


    A short time later, police were advised by a local hospital that a 26-year-old male had arrived with life-threatening injuries. The male reportedly died shortly thereafter.

    Homicide Section has since assumed the investigation. An autopsy has been scheduled for Thursday, May 23, 2019.No further information is being released at this time.

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