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The Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods (SCAN) unit of the Alberta Sheriffs obtained a court order against the owner of 1423 Child Avenue NE, closing the property for 90 days.
The community safety order obtained in Court of Queen’s Bench took effect at noon on Dec. 21, giving sheriffs the authority to board up the house, change the locks and erect a fence around the property. Nobody is allowed on the property without permission from the sheriffs until the closure ends on March 21, 2021.
“Law-abiding residents of this community should not have to tolerate this kind of activity that endangers their families. I applaud law enforcement for their decisive action in making this community safer. SCAN investigations give authorities the ability to stop criminal activity that endangers law-abiding Albertans, and their work ensures appropriate legal consequences for property owners who permit criminal activity on their property.”
SCAN’s investigation began in April 2020 in response to several complaints from the community about drug use, drug trafficking and related criminal activity associated with the property.
SCAN investigators substantiated the complaints about drug activity, and observed a large number of people coming and going from the property.
Records indicate that the Calgary Police Service responded to 143 incidents at the property in a two-year period between September 2018 and September 2020, including a stabbing, a home invasion, two fatal drug overdoses and several noise complaints between midnight and the early morning hours. A police search warrant in December 2019 resulted in the seizure of stolen property.
On Dec. 11, SCAN obtained a community safety order against the owner of the property, who lived on the premises. The property is for sale and must remain vacant during the 90-day closure, but sheriffs can grant the owner and a realtor access for the purpose of showing it to potential buyers.
The SCAN unit works with other law enforcement agencies to shut down properties being used for illegal activities. The Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act gives sheriffs the authority to target problem properties through civil enforcement.
Since its inception in 2008, Alberta’s SCAN unit has investigated more than 5,800 problem properties and issued more than 90 community safety orders. The majority of complaints are resolved by working with property owners to keep criminal activity out of the community.