Tourist shot in head while driving near Morley, Alta., RCMP investigate road rage as motive

WATCH: RCMP Sgt. Tom Kalis says they are investigating whether road rage was involved in a shooting on Highway 1A near Morley Thursday.

UPDATE: German tourist pulls through surgery after shooting on highway west of Calgary

RCMP are investigating road rage as a possible motive for a shooting that saw a vacationing tourist shot in the head while driving his family along a highway through the southern Alberta community of Morley on Thursday.

Police said a 60-year-old man visiting Canada from Germany was driving west on Highway 1A when he was shot, causing him to veer off the road and crash into a tree.

WATCH: A German tourist is in critical condition in a Calgary hospital after being shot in the head in what RCMP are calling a possible road rage incident near Morley. Blake Lough reports.

Tourist shot in head while driving near Morley, Alta., RCMP investigate road rage as motive
Tourist shot in head while driving near Morley, Alta., RCMP investigate road rage as motive

RCMP Sgt. Tom Kalis said it appears the suspect vehicle — believed to be a small black car driven by a man with longer brown hair — was passing the family’s truck when the shot was fired.

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He said based on the damage to the driver’s side window of the truck, it’s believed a small-calibre bullet was shot from the gun, which caused a penetrating brain injury.

The driver was airlifted to hospital in Calgary via STARS Air Ambulance in life-threatening condition, EMS said.

Three other people in the vehicle, who are family members of the driver, were not injured in the crash, Kalis said. RCMP previously reported they sustained minor injuries.

WATCH: RCMP are investigating after a German tourist was shot while driving on Highway 1A near Morley, Alta.

Alberta RCMP on scene of shooting near Morley
Alberta RCMP on scene of shooting near Morley

As of 3:30 p.m., police said the most likely theory they’re investigating is that the shooting was part of a road rage incident.

“One of the theories that we’re examining at this time is that there may be a road rage incident involving… a small black car that was travelling in a similar direction and was passing this truck at the time of the impact and the gunshot,” Kalis said.

“We’ve got a fairly significant search scene out there and we have a number of specialized resources that are scouring the scene. We’re not seeing any evidence that would support other theories.”

Kalis said the 911 call came from another motorist on the highway who was flagged down by one of the family members in the car.

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A substantial police presence at the scene as of 3 p.m., including a police service dog and collision analyst.

Kalis added investigators don’t believe the incident was part of a string of shooting incidents and there is no danger to the public.

“[It’s] certainly an extremely uncommon thing for us to have happen in Canada,” Kalis said.

Police are looking to speak with witnesses and ask anyone with information to call Cochrane RCMP at 403-851-8000.

Morley is about 60 kilometres west of Calgary.

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