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Home News Man arrested near Spirit River after series of gun battles last Friday

Man arrested near Spirit River after series of gun battles last Friday

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SPIRIT RIVER, A.B. – One man is in custody after allegedly trespassing on a rural property near Spirit River and getting into an altercation with multiple victims that included gunfire.

At approximately 3:00 last Friday afternoon, members of the Spirit River RCMP were called to a rural property south of town after a male suspect was found trespassing on the complainant’s neighbour’s property. When confronted, the suspect drove off in a vehicle, while the complainant called 911 and followed in his own vehicle.

Shortly thereafter, the suspect pulled over and fired several rounds from a handgun striking the complainant’s vehicle. The suspect then headed south, until it followed another passing vehicle into a yard that led to a rural home. Once there, the suspect pointed his firearm at the male driver and demanded his vehicle. The female passenger took the keys and retreated inside the residence not wanting to give keys to the vehicle while her four-year-old daughter was still in the back seat. Inside the residence, a round was fired by the suspect that missed the female victim when he again demanded she hand over the keys. The victim handed the keys to the suspect and updated 911.

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During this altercation between the female passenger and the suspect, the male driver had entered his residence and retrieved a long gun. He exited his residence and confronted the suspect while he was transferring stolen property from one vehicle to another. The victim told the suspect to surrender and drop his weapon. The suspect then fired at the victim, discharging multiple rounds. The victim fired back at the suspect but did not strike him. Thankfully, none of the victims were injured in this incident.

The suspect departed on foot. RCMP arrived and contained the area. With the assistance of RCMP members from Grande Prairie, Fairview, and Police Dog Services the suspect was apprehended a short time later without incident.

Ian Preston Letendre (30) of No Fixed Address is facing 25 Criminal Code Charges including:

  • Break and Enter to a residence
  • Discharge firearm with intent to endanger life (x3)
  • Pointing a firearm (x3)
  • Mischief (x3)
  • Careless use of a firearm
  • Use firearm while committing an indictable offence (x2)
  • Transport firearm in a careless manner
  • Possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose (x2)
  • Possession of a loaded restricted firearm (x2)
  • Possession of a property obtained by crime over $5000
  • Armed robbery
  • Careless storage of a firearm
  • Unlawful possession of a firearm in a vehicle
  • Unlawful possession of a firearm
  • Possession of a firearm obtained by crime
  • Fail to comply with Recognizance

Letendre was remanded into custody and appeared in Grande Prairie Provincial Court today.

“This was a dynamic situation where the suspect’s actions posed an imminent threat to rural residents. With the support of area residents and the collaboration of responding RCMP members, we were able to bring the incident to a quick resolution where thankfully no one was injured,” said Sgt. Ryan Frost, Spirit River Detachment Commander.

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