Loon Lake RCMP members have made four arrests after a pursuit of suspects in the area of Loon Lake. Early Thursday morning, Mounties responded a call of a man with a head injury on Makwa Lake First Nation. The serious but non-life threatening injury was being treated by local EMS and he was taken to Meadow Lake Hospital.
Shortly after, RCMP responded to multiple complaints of gunshots on the Makwa Lake First Nation. They found no suspects but after an investigation discovered shotgun pellets in the door and siding of a house. The area was contained, and officers identified a suspect and a gold truck as a suspect vehicle. Investigators believe these two incidents are related and are the result of gang-related activity in the area.
Shortly after noon on Friday, Loon Lake RCMP officers responded to multiple tips that the suspect vehicle was driving on the Makwa Lake First Nation. Several RCMP Traffic Services and Loon Lake RCMP Detachment vehicles were in the area and, along with PRT officers, immediately responded. Investigators quickly determined there was a black SUV travelling with the gold truck.
At around 1:30 p.m. both vehicles were located in the village of Loon Lake. Neither of the vehicles were engaged due to safety concerns for the general public. However, officers set up roadblocks on highways in the surrounding area. The vehicles left Loon Lake on Highway 26 and encountered a roadblock where a spike belt was deployed, damaging the black SUV.
Both vehicles were located over a kilometre north of the spike belt. Officers saw the occupants of the now disabled black SUV entering the gold truck. As the suspects were running to the gold truck, one appeared to be pointing at the officers with a firearm. The gold truck then fled the scene.
Officers located the gold truck turning east off of Highway 26 when it fled through deep snow. The truck entered Highway 55 travelling at up 150 km/h with officers pursuing the suspect vehicle. Once it entered Pierceland the pursuit was terminated for safety reasons.
As the truck was heading east towards the Bighead First Nation another spike belt was successfully deployed, however, the suspect vehicle did not stop. Officers had another roadblock with a spike belt setup about 8 kilometres north, and with officers at the roadblock and in pursuit, the suspect vehicle went over the spike belt.
It was travelling at high speed and an RCMP officer had to leap out of the way to avoid being hit. The truck stopped after hitting a police vehicle. Four individuals were arrested and two firearms were located during this incident. Fortunately, no one was injured as RCMP officers worked to stop these two vehicles.
Tonia Cantell, Cody Dillon, Tonio Cantell and Juanita Wahpistikwan are charged with assault on a Peace Officer with a weapon, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, possession of property obtained by crime and flight from police. Tonia Cantell is charged with failure to comply with probation and Cody Dillon is charged with driving while prohibited.
The investigation into the injured male located at the residence and the firearm discharge on the Makwa First Nation continues. Anyone with information is asked to contact Look Lake RCMP at (306) 837-2440. You may contact Saskatchewan Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or submit a tip online at www.saskcrimestoppers.com.