On Aug. 6, at approximately 3:17 a.m., officers with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police attended a call for assistance from a residence in Sylvan Lake. The information the police received indicated that a man was armed with a shotgun and had barricaded himself in a bedroom. Officers entered the home and began speaking with the man, who stayed in the bedroom.

The attending officers wore microphones linked to their vehicle’s recording devices, which captured the interaction. During the brief conversation, the man expressed a desire to harm himself and said he did not wish any harm to the attending officers.

The man stayed in the bedroom and did not have any physical interaction with the attending officers before shooting himself. ASIRT verified that none of the attending officers had used their weapons, confirming the man’s injuries were self-inflicted.

In light of the man’s interaction with police, ASIRT was directed to investigate the circumstances leading to his death. All officers acted appropriately and the ASIRT investigation is closed.

The second investigation involved an incident in Calgary on Oct. 25. At approximately 5:30 a.m., on that date, Calgary Police Service (CPS) officers attended a residence in the community of Royal Oak, in northwest Calgary.

Someone at the home called 911, asking for help dealing with an adult male relative armed with a knife and acting erratically inside the residence.

CPS officers attended and activated their body-worn cameras (BWCs) prior to entering the residence. All interactions with the man, as well as other family members, were captured by the BWCs and have been reviewed by ASIRT.

Upon entering the home, the lead officer started talking to the man, who was at the top of a stairway leading from the main entrance. BWC recordings captured audio of the man speaking with the officer, as well as video showing him armed with a knife.

The lead officer tried to de-escalate the situation by calmly speaking with the man and reassuring him that no harm would come to him. Although the man held onto the knife and verbally threatened to harm the lead officer at one point, the officer did not engage in any use of force nor seek cover.

Throughout the interaction, the lead officer ensured that other officers remained at a distance to prevent the man from becoming agitated. The lead officer’s compassion was exemplary. Unfortunately, the man left the area at the top of the stairs and harmed himself while alone upstairs in the residence. When the attending officers became aware that the male was likely harming himself, they went upstairs and located the man suffering from significant injuries. Despite rendering first aid, the man’s self-inflicted injuries proved fatal.

Due to a death of a civilian occurring while interacting with police officers, ASIRT was directed to investigate. After reviewing BWC footage and speaking to necessary witnesses, ASIRT has determined the man tragically took his own life in the presence of officers. There was no use of force nor any other actions by officers that led to the man’s death. The BWC footage conclusively demonstrated that the lead officer was the only officer to have meaningful contact with the man prior to his self-harm. The lead officer demonstrated professionalism and empathy. All officers involved acted appropriately and the ASIRT investigation is closed.

ASIRT’s mandate is to effectively, independently and objectively investigate incidents involving Alberta’s police that have resulted in serious injury or death to any person, as well as serious or sensitive allegations of police misconduct.


This release is distributed by the Government of Alberta on behalf of the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team.