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Sask. RCMP request independent investigation after suspect fatally shot

Saskatoon police will conduct an external investigation into an incident that resulted in a man being killed and a RCMP officer being injured during a search warrant on Sunday. Global News

An independent, external investigation will be conducted by the Saskatoon Police Service after a request was made by Saskatchewan RCMP this weekend.

This comes after gunfire was exchanged during a search warrant executed on Saturday night in the village of Waseca, Sask., as part of an investigation into drug and weapons trafficking in west central Saskatchewan.

The incident resulted in a suspect being killed and a RCMP officer being injured.

“When an incident results in death or serious injury, the RCMP Act – the legislation that governs the RCMP – requires that an investigation be conducted by an external agency,” the Saskatchewan RCMP explained in a news release on Sunday.

“The Saskatchewan RCMP has requested the Ministry of Justice appoint an independent investigation observer in accordance with Section 91.1 of the Saskatchewan Police Act.”

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RCMP shared in its statement that the investigation began in October of 2021 when investigators determined cocaine, methamphetamine, fentanyl and firearms were being trafficked in and around the North Battleford, Sask. area.

As a result of this discovery, police say they ran a search warrant at 11:45 p.m. at a commercial property in Waseca, which is about 230 kilometres northwest of Saskatoon.

RCMP said they determined a “significant risk” to both public and police safety during the search warrant, which resulted in the deployment of the RCMP’s critical incident response team to assist.

Police learned there were four people on the property. Two men and one woman exited the building and were safely arrested after negotiation with the suspects, which included the use of non-lethal methods, according to police.

The last suspect, a 33-year-old man from the Lloydminster, Sask. area, stayed in the building and did not comply to officer commands, police said on Sunday.

The man did exit the building after officers continued to use non-lethal methods to get him to comply. However, the suspect displayed a firearm.

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RCMP said a shootout occurred and the man was fatally injured. Police say his family has been notified of his death.

RCMP added that an officer is in hospital recovering from what they say is believed to be a non-life-threatening injury.

“The Saskatchewan RCMP takes these matters very seriously. We are giving the external investigators at the Saskatoon Police Service our full cooperation as they conduct an independent, external investigation into the circumstances surrounding what happened,” said Assistant Commissioner Rhonda Blackmore, who serves as the Saskatchewan RCMP’s commanding officer.

“My thoughts are with our injured officer, the community, and the family of the deceased.”

RCMP is warning the public that there will be an increased police presence in Waseca as the investigation continues.

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