A man whose home was the scene of a standoff and shootout that injured two RCMP officers early this morning lived in the rural home east of Edmonton for about 30 years, say neighbours.
"He's my neighbour," said Ron Janiten, who lives next to the property. "He's not a bad guy. I think it's the company he keeps."
Two men and one woman were arrested, but no names have been released.The woman has since been released and is no longer considered a suspect.
One officer was run over with a one-ton truck. He remains in serious condition with several broken bones and internal injuries in hospital in Edmonton. Another Mountie who was grazed in the shoulder by gunfire was treated and released.
"One man tried to flee the area in a truck, and that’s when he ran over an officer," the CBC's Briar Stewart reported from the scene. "And shortly after that, the gunfire broke out and one officer was hit in the arm."
Officers called to home
The incident began late Monday night.
RCMP were first called to a home at Township Road 522 and Range Road 192, east of Elk Island National Park and north of Tofield, at about 2 p.m. MT Monday. A man had allegedly threatened to go to another residence and kill someone.
While officers were trying to track him down, they received a call about a break-in at a farmhouse. The farmer reported encountering a man matching their suspect’s description inside the house, said Chief Supt. Randy McGinnis.
The suspect left with three of the farmer’s long-barrelled firearms and a handgun.
Five RCMP officers went looking for the man at a house owned by one of his associates.
“Unfortunately he was at the residence when we got there and this incident unfolded,” McGinnis said.
A fight broke out. The man and his associate jumped into a stolen one-ton truck, running over one of the officers.
"As the gentleman tried to exit the scene, he drove into the ditch and became stuck," McGinnis said.
"Then a firefight ensued between this gentleman and our members. I can't tell you how many rounds were exchanged but I do know that this gentleman was armed with a shotgun, a .22 and 410, as well as a handgun of an unknown calibre."
One of the two men in the truck was wounded.
A woman who lived with the homeowner was also arrested, McGinnis said.
All three suspects are known to police.
"I do know that the suspect has been on our radar for numerous break-and-enters and thefts in the rural area for the last month or so," McGinnis said.
The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team, which investigates all shootings involving police, is now looking into the incident.