Youth arrested in connection with shooting of German tourist

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A 16-year-old was arrested and charged Aug. 24 with attempted murder for the shooting of a German tourist Aug. 2 on Highway 1A near Morley, according to Alberta RCMP Communications Officer Cpl. Curtis Peters.

“A 16-year-old youth, who was a resident of the Stoney Nakoda Nation, has been charged with 14 Criminal Code offences including attempted murder, discharging a firearm with intent and possession of a prohibited weapon,” he said. “The youth, who cannot be named under provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act, has been remanded into custody and is scheduled to make his first court appearance Aug. 28 in Cochrane Provincial Court.”

According to Peters, a charge of attempted murder can only be laid if there was intent on the part of the accused that the act would cause the death of an individual.

“We believe that the firing of the weapon into the driver’s window meets that threshold,” he said. “Only one round was fired.”

The shooting took place at approximately 11:40 a.m., when a Dodge Durango driven by the tourist was overtaken by another vehicle travelling in the same direction. As the second vehicle passed the driver’s side, a shot was fired from the passenger side of the suspect vehicle, entering the driver’s side window of the Durango and striking the male driver in the head.

The weapon and vehicle used in the offense have both been located by investigators, according to Peters.

The youth is the only person charged in the shooting, and Peters said RCMP has no reason to continue to look for additional suspects. There were additional people in the vehicle with the accused, Peters said, but investigators have ruled them out as suspects.

The victim, a 60-year-old man, was transported back to Germany and Peters said while doctors there had successfully removed the bullet, the man would face a long period of recovery and rehabilitation.

“That bullet will be sent here to Canada, where it will undergo forensic testing to compare it to the firearm that has been recovered,” he said. “The victim and his family have been notified of the outcome, that charges have been laid.”

The RCMP K- Division Serious Crimes Branch, Cochrane RCMP Detachment and several other support units were involved in the investigation, according to Peters.

“The investigation could not have reached this successful conclusion without a tremendous amount of support from the residents of the Stoney Nakoda First Nation and members of the public,” he said.

“This investigation has been progressed largely by what I would call good, old-fashioned police work. Our investigators have talked to over 100 people through the course of this investigation, taking all the little pieces…and putting them together, which led to identifying the suspect.”

A motive for the shooting is part of that continuing investigation, Peters added. He said he believed there was “no conflict leading up to the shooting” and declined to provide any further detail.

The arrest was made without incident, according to Peters, on the Stoney Nakoda First Nation. The youth will be back in Cochrane Provincial Court the week of Sept. 3.

If you have any information about any crime, contact your local RCMP detachment or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or online at tipsubmit.com

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