June 23 – A Ponoka RCMP Traffic Services member was conducting enforcement on Highway 2. A vehicle was clocked going 146 km/hr and the member activated the emergency lights and siren on his police vehicle to attempt a traffic stop with the suspect. The suspect fled from police, and accelerated away at speeds of 157 km/hr and above. An investigation ensued and the driver of the vehicle was identified. The driver, a 24-year-old male from Fort Saskatchewan, Alta., has been charged with the following provincial offences with fines totalling over $1,300:
-Failure to obey directions of a Peace Officer directing traffic;
-exceed the maximum speed limit;
-failure to stop for a Peace Officer, and
-Overtaking and passing a vehicle by driving off the roadway.
June 28 – Ponoka RCMP received numerous complaints of a white dodge truck driving erratically on Highway 2 southbound near Ponoka. The truck was described as driving at speed in excess of 160 km/h, weaving in and out of traffic, and passing people on the shoulder, gravely endangering other motorists. With the assistance of their complainants providing accurate location updates and descriptions of the vehicle, RCMP members were able to respond swiftly, locating the suspect vehicle at a rest stop near Lacombe. A traffic stop was initiated and a mandatory alcohol screening was conducted with the suspect driver. The driver provided a sample which exceeded the legal limit for alcohol. The driver, a 41-year-old male from Red Deer, was issued an immediate roadside license suspension, a 30-day vehicle seizure, and two violation tickets for transporting liquor in an open container as well as transporting liquor in a vehicle when liquor is in easy access of an occupant.
July 2 – Ponoka RCMP members were dispatched to a third party report from a concerned citizen regarding a male carrying a firearm. The male was believed to be travelling on foot near Highway 53 and 54 Street in Ponoka. Members responded and swiftly located a male matching the description provided in the dispatch. Assistance from RCMP Police Dog Services facilitated the location of a replica firearm which had been discarded by the male suspect nearby. A 20-year-old male of Ma-Me-O Beach, Alta., has been charged with the following Criminal Code offences in relation to this incident:
– Possession of a weapon for a dangerous purpose;
– Two counts of weapons possession contrary to an order;
– Carrying a concealed weapon;
– Using a firearm in the commission of an offence;
– Obstructing a Peace Officer;
– Two counts of unauthorized possession of a firearm; and
– Possession of a firearm when knowing possession is unauthorized.
All charges remain before the courts.
July 9 – Ponoka RCMP members received a complaint regarding an elderly couple who were stranded on Highway 2 with a flat tire. No tow trucks were available at the time. The RCMP member had a few moments to spare and came to the aid of the couple in changing their tire for them to get them safely back on the road. Although this is not part of RCMP’s regular duties, these members demonstrated compassion and kindness in going above and beyond.
July 10 — Ponoka RCMP members were privileged to attend the Ponoka Youth Centre to speak with some of Ponoka’s youth. During their presentation, RCMP members opened up the floor to questions from the youngsters. They spoke to the youth about the in’s and out’s of their jobs as police officers and aimed to help the children understand their roles as police within the community.
July 12 – A Ponoka RCMP member on patrol located a vehicle with a burnt-out taillight. As a result of a traffic stop with this vehicle, Ponoka RCMP located, arrested, and charged prolific offender Tyler Kellington, 34, of Ponoka for failing to comply with his court-ordered curfew condition. Kellington was brought before a justice. Kellington’s charges remain before the courts.
There have been a number of damaged Canada Post mailboxes and theft of mail files throughout the Town of Ponoka and Ponoka County in the month of July. Anyone with information on these crimes is encouraged to contact Ponoka RCMP to make a statement or Crime Stoppers to report anonymously. Mail theft is an offence which often leads to identity fraud and identity theft in Alberta.
Ponoka RCMP has observed a heightened volume of fraud complaints resulting from online scams in the Town of Ponoka and Ponoka County. There are endless formulations of scams circulating in which fraudsters may contact victims via phone call, text, email, and, recently, most prominently through various websites or social media platforms.
Elderly populations are particularly vulnerable to these scams due to a naturally narrowed knowledge base surrounding ever-evolving technology associated with social media, online banking platforms, and various other types of apps.
Ponoka RCMP encourages all community members to heed caution when providing personal information of any kind to sources which have not been confirmed to be legitimate. Never send money or provide banking information or any other information to any source whose legitimacy is not confirmed or whose offer appears too good to be true.
For more material on how to protect yourself from becoming a victim of fraud as well as more information on current popular scams, Ponoka RCMP encourages you to visit the Government of Canada website for the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre: www.antifraudcentre-centreantifraude.ca.