EDMONTON – Classes at a community learning centre in Stony Plain have had to be cancelled for the time-being after what RCMP are describing as an “enormous amount of damage.”
It stems from a break-and-enter that happened at the Connections for Learning (CFL) building before 8 a.m. Saturday.
“The school was trashed,” said Cpl. Colette Zazulak of Spruce Grove and Stony Plain RCMP.
Officers who were called to the scene found computers smashed, Smart Boards destroyed, and a water fountain pulled from the wall.
“It’s a disaster zone,” said Deputy Superintendent of the Parkland School Division, Kelly Wilkins, who surveyed the damage on Monday.
“It was very disappointing to see…It just doesn’t make any sense.”
Police found the suspect after receiving a call about a man stumbling around the area, looking intoxicated.
“When we started talking to him,” Zazulak said, “we were able to realize there was a really good chance that he was the fellow who committed the break-and-enter.”
Grant Butland of New Brunswick was arrested after RCMP say a police dog tracked his scent back to the learning centre. He has been charged with break and enter, assault, and mischief over $5,000.
The 25-year-old is in custody, and is scheduled to appear in Stony Plain Court on Wednesday.
But what puzzles school officials is that RCMP don’t believe Butland has any connection to the learning centre, or its staff or students.
The insurance company is still trying to figure out the total damage, which Zazulak believes will be in the tens of thousands of dollars.
The school division, meanwhile, is looking at ways to house some of the alternative programming offered at the centre for its roughly 130 students.
So far, classes at CFL have been cancelled until at least Wednesday, but officials are hoping to go ahead with a planned field trip from the centre on Tuesday.
“We just want to move forward,” Wilkins said.
With files from Quinn Ohler, Global News