WATCH ABOVE: The shooting in St. Albert is striking a chord with many Albertans who are worried about the injured officers. But as Quinn Ohler reports, it’s also a reminder of what is faced by those who protect us.
EDMONTON — The shooting of two St. Albert RCMP officers is yet another reminder of the dangers faced by those who serve their communities.
It’s been nearly 10 years since four Alberta Mounties were shot and killed when James Roszko opened fire on them moments after they walked into a hut on his property near Mayerthorpe. The lives of Constables Brock Myrol, Leo Johnston, Peter Schiemann and Anthony Gordon were tragically cut short in the incident.
“Time heals and so certainly the shock and the horror of it is not as foremost in our minds as it once was. We still miss our son very much,” Reverend Donald Schiemann, Peter’s father, said Saturday.
Schiemann knows all too well the fears faced by families of first responders. He says this is the time to think of and care for the families of the injured officers.
“It is such a shock for the families,” Schiemann said. “It’s a terrible thing that happens and immediately I think of the families. I immediately pray for the families.”
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Since the Mayerthorpe shootings in March 2005, Alberta has seen a number of incidents where police officers were put in serious danger.
In February 2012, two constables were injured in a standoff on a farm near Killam, Alberta, which is about 160 kilometres southeast of Edmonton. Two constables were shot while executing a search warrant on the farm; both men survived.
In January of 2014, two Alberta RCMP officers were injured during a standoff in an area between Vegreville and Tofield. One of the Mounties was shot in the arm. The other had to undergo surgery after being run over by a vehicle at the rural property.
And just last May, a shoot-out in St. Paul left three Mounties injured.
“The RCMP is an incredible police force and its members every day put their lives on the line,” said Schiemann.
The shooting in the bedroom community bordering Edmonton’s northwest comes just one day after the release of a report into the deaths of three RCMP officers in Moncton last June. The independent report highlighted a number of challenges faced by the RCMP when they were searching for Justin Borque, who was arrested 28 hours after the June 4 shooting rampage began.
The report released Friday makes 64 recommendations that call for better access to shotguns and rifles, standard equipment for emergency response teams, improvements in radio communication and training to better prepare supervisors for critical incidents.
With files from Quinn Ohler, Global News.