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Crime

Charges laid after gunman fires shots while walking in northern Alberta hamlet prompting lockdowns

A file photo of an RCMP cruiser.
A file photo of an RCMP cruiser. Kirby Bourne/630 CHED File

UPDATE: On Thursday, Oct. 10, 2019, Athabasca RCMP said the missing gun has been recovered along with ammunition.

Charges have been laid a day after a school and other buildings in Calling Lake, Alta., were put into lockdown over reports of a gunman walking down a street in the community and firing off shots.

In a news release issued Wednesday, Athabasca RCMP said officers began receiving complaints about the shooting at 2:27 p.m. on Tuesday.

People said the suspect was walking down Calling Lake Drive.

“As a precaution, multiple service buildings in the area were locked down, including the Calling Lake School which was nearby, as the suspect posed a threat to the public and police,” RCMP said.

No injuries were reported.

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Police said they believe the suspect broke into a home and stole a shotgun and ammunition before they were spotted on the road.

“RCMP deployed multiple resources, including Athabasca detachment members, Athabasca Integrated Traffic Services, Police Dog Services, RCMP Air Services and members from Desmarais RCMP,” police said.

RCMP said while the suspect was arrested without incident, the gun they believe he was shooting has not been recovered.

Jaycee Bigstone, 20, has been charged with careless use of a firearm, possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose, unauthorized possession of a firearm, possession of a firearm knowing possession was unauthorized, breaking and entering and stealing a firearm, possession of a firearm while prohibited and failing to comply with an undertaking.

Bigstone is scheduled to appear in Athabasca Provincial Court on Oct. 28.

Anyone with information about the gun that was fired on Tuesday is asked to call the Athabasca RCMP detachment at 780-675-5122 or their local police department. Tips can also be anonymously submitted to Crime Stoppers by phoning 1-800-222-8477 or contacting them online.

Calling Lake is located about 210 kilometres north of Edmonton.

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