Five people associated with a gang are facing charges following a police chase on New Year’s Day.
Onion Lake RCMP were called to a rural area west of Onion Lake Cree Nation at 2 p.m. on January 1st. A resident in the area reported a black SUV drove into a private yard then quickly drove off and smashed through a fence on the way out.
Officers searched for the vehicle and found it heading north on Highway 17, about 4 km south of Chief Taylor Road junction. They pursued and the vehicle turned east on Chief Taylor Road.
While following the vehicle, Onion Lake RCMP say someone in the vehicle pulled out a long-barreled gun and fired at the officers multiple times. The black SUV stopped in front of the new Onion Lake Cree Nation High School and two men got out and ran into a nearby open field. Two officers pursued them on foot, while other officers arrested the three passengers inside the SUV.
Officers caught and arrested one of the men in a baseball field while the other was found hiding inside a garbage bin. All five were taken into custody and later identified to be associated with local street gangs.
In a search of the vehicle, RCMP seized two SKS rifles, a sawed-off shotgun, a sawed-off 22-caliber rifle and different types of ammunition.
Saskatchewan RCMP Inspector Joshua Graham oversaw the incident as the Officer in charge of Operations for Central Saskatchewan.
“This is a reminder that policing is dangerous. When an incident starts involving firearms, as the officer in charge of operations, I naturally worry about the safety of my officers involved. Then I remember that we are all in good hands. Every day, I see several examples of good policing like this across our province, where our officers are successful at stopping a threat while controlling the risks and ensuring officer and public safety.”
North Battleford Provincial General Investigation Section overtook the investigation and charged all five occupants.
Twaine Derek Buffalo, 39, Glynnis Larene Chief, 37, Tyler Ryan Wolfe, 35, all from Onion Lake Cree Nation, Danny Lee Weeseekase, 38, from Makwa Sahgaiehcan First Nation face multiple weapons charges including possession without a licence, careless use of a firearm and assault of a police officer with a weapon.
Wolfe faces two additional charges of flight from police and dangerous driving. Weeseekase also faces an additional charge of breach of weapon possession.
Melissa Lee McAlpine, 32, from Lloydminster faces three weapons charges including discharge of a firearm with intent to endanger life, being an occupant of a motor vehicle knowing there was a firearm and assault of a police officer with a weapon.
All five remain in custody until their court appearance at Lloydminster Provincial Court on January 20.