On July 27 2019 The Medicine Hat Municipal Enforcement Section responded to a complaint about a puppy that had been bought from a local resident. The complaint was that the puppy became ill, requiring vet care. The puppy was treated and tested positive for the PARVO Virus, a deadly highly contagious disease if puppies are not vaccinated for it.
When the officer attended the location identified as the breeders home, no puppies remained in the care of the sellers, all 9 puppies in the litter had been sold and were in the care of the new owners. It was confirmed that none of the puppies had visited a vet yet or had been vaccinated.
The Alberta SPCA was contacted and they provided the following response. “The dog breeding industry is unregulated so there is no standard of care they must provide before selling their puppies. Legally, breeders can be held accountable if they are denying animals vet care when they are sick or injured. So, if a dog has parvo, they have to seek medical care, but they do not have to provide vaccinations before selling the puppies”. Unfortunately, this virus can be present and contagious days before the clinical symptoms begin to show, but once the symptoms such as vomiting, severe and often bloody diarrhea and a very lethargic behaviour, a vet visit is required by law.
The Alberta Animal Protection Act is the legislation available to investigate and enforce animal care and treatment in our Province and according to the Alberta SPCA there is insufficient evidence to prove intent and knowledge that the puppies were infected with Parvo and left untreated by the breeders.
When people knowingly take custody of an unvaccinated pet they assume all responsibility. This is why most animal professionals advise against obtaining pets from what is commonly described as Back Yard Breeders.
The Municipal Enforcement Section is now looking at preventive measures to avoid further risk of Parvo in this community that may be linked back to this location and breeding pair. Although the breeders do not believe Parvo was present in their home they are willing to work with officers to prevent any further risks.
The Medicine Hat Police Service has noted a trend of vehicle entries and bicycle thefts throughout the City, but specifically in the Crescent Heights area of Medicine Hat. Occurrences has been mainly in the late night hours Thursday – Tuesday between 11:00 p.m. and 430 a.m.
The Police Service is requesting the publics’ assistance in these matter by ensuring vehicles are locked, and all valuables are removed or secured, and any suspicious activity it reported to the Police Service immediately.
In response to this trend the Police Service will augment resource deployment; with the aim the identify offenders and hold them accountable for any illegal activities.
Anyone with information that could assist with this investigation is asked to contact the Medicine Hat Police Service at 403-529-8481 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800 -222-8477 (TIPS). Tips may also be submitted (anonymously if preferred) via the MHPS Mobile App, which is free and available to download for both Apple and Android devices by searching ‘Medicine Hat Police Service’ on the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
Attached is a “heat map” of recent complaints. Areas in Red have shown a greater activity.
S/Sgt. Ryan Thorburn
Medicine Hat Police service
The Municipal Bylaw Enforcement Section of the Medicine Hat Police Service will be focusing on fire pits and outdoor burning in August 2019.
Fire pits and outdoor fireplaces shall meet the following requirements:
1. A minimum of 3 meters (10 feet) clearance shall be maintained from any buildings, property lines, overhead wires, trees or any combustible materials.
2. Installations shall have enclosed sides, a minimum height of 450mm (18 inches from ground level) and a maximum width of 900mm (36 inches).
3. Installations shall be made of bricks, concrete blocks, heavy gauge metal or other suitable non-combustible components.
4. A spark arrestor mesh screen of ½ inch expanded metal (or equivalent) to contain sparks shall be provided for over the fire.
5. Only clean fuel shall be used (clean, dry wood or charcoal).
6. Fires must be supervised at all times.
Refuse or waste materials, including leaves, shall not be burned as this will create dense smoke or offensive odors.
Permits for fir pits and outdoor fireplaces are issued by the Fire Department ph: 403-529-8282.
To report a bylaw offences please call our complaints line at 403-529-8481.
Supervisor Heather Trail
Peace Officer i/c,
Municipal Bylaw Enforcement
The MHPS will be focusing on Young Drivers in the month of August as part of the province wide Selected Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP). Vehicle crashes are the number one killer of young people in Alberta. Age, inexperience, distraction and peer pressure are significant factors in vehicle related injuries and death during the teen years. Crash rates for young drivers are the highest when there are teen passengers in the vehicle and when driving at night. One in five new drivers will be involved in a collision in their first year of driving.
Parents play a vital role in teaching their teens to drive. Parents of teen drivers should set a good example behind the wheel, and set specific rules for their teen driver and stick to them. Parents can also enroll their teen driver in driver education, and most importantly, help your teen to practice driving.
Did you know? In Alberta, a parent of a driver under 18 years of age must give written consent to allow their teen to get their operator’s license. Parents can revoke that permission at any time, and their teen’s operator’s license will be revoked. Parents maintain that right until their teen reaches the age of 18 years. If a parent or legal guardian wishes to withdraw parental consent, they may be required to submit their request in writing to any Alberta Registry Office. The parental withdrawal MUST be initiated by the same parent/person who signed the original consent form.
In August, the MHPS will also focus on Distracted Drivers, which continues to be a traffic safety priority. Many motorists continue to operate their vehicles while distracted, regardless of the fines and demerits associated with the offence. The risks associated with distracted driving closely resemble those of impairment, and it’s no surprise that governments are taking that next step to try and limit these occurrences.
In Alberta, the penalty for distracted driving is a $287 fine and three (3) demerit points. Drivers also need to be aware that the legislation is not specific to only texting or talking on a device, but states it is an offence to “hold, view, or manipulate” a hand-held device.
The Traffic Safety Act restricts drivers from:
- Holding, viewing or manipulating hand held cell phones, whether talking, texting or emailing
- using electronic devices like laptop computers, video games, cameras, video entertainment displays and programming portable audio players (MP3 players)
- entering information on GPS units
- reading printed materials in the vehicle
- writing, printing or sketching
- and personal grooming
A driver can pull over to the side of the road to use their devices, providing they are stopped and legally parked. If a driver is not in a legal parking spot, for instance a drive-thru, a ticket can still be issued. The only time a driver can use their cell phone while driving is to call in an emergency situation to a 9-1-1 Communications Centre.
For more information, contact:
Sgt. Clarke White
Medicine Hat Police Service
On July 30 at approximately 2 pm Police and additional emergency services responded to the westbound lanes on the TC highway at 16th St SW for a multi vehicle crash. 4 vehicles were involved. 2 persons were transported to MHRH with undetermined injuries. This incident is causing traffic delays and emergency services remain on scene until the roadway can be cleared. Damage is estimated to be in excess of $40,000.00. MHPS traffic services continue to investigate the cause of the crash. No further information will be released as the investigation is ongoing.
Jason Higdon was located and arrested this evening by the Medicine Hat Police Service. Higdon had been wanted in connection to several offences in and around the Medicine Hat area. He is currently in custody and facing charges of; Flight from a Peace Officer, Dangerous Operation of a Motor Vehicle, and Possession of Stolen Property Over $5000.
On July 26th, 2019 at approximately 11:40 AM, a member of the Medicine Hat Police Service (MHPS) attempted to conduct a traffic stop of a 4-door white Buick Century, in the area of Prince Street SE, Medicine Hat. The vehicle was driving erratically, at very low speeds, and the driver and lone occupant of the vehicle, appeared not to notice the presence of police. The vehicle continued Southbound on Maple Avenue and increased speed.
The police officer discontinued the use of emergency equipment in order to reduce the potential of harm to the public. Another police vehicle in the area began to monitor the vehicle as it travelled Southbound on Allowance Avenue.
Near the intersection of Kingsway and Dunmore Road the vehicle crossed the meridian prior to the traffic lights and proceeded to drive on the wrong side of the road against traffic, and then drove in the proper lane and went up Dunmore Rd. At the intersection of 22nd St SE and Dunmore Rd the car collided with a City of Medicine Hat Handi-Transit bus. The collision pushed the bus into a Ford SUV, occupied by two adults and two children, which was on 22nd Street SE, causing minor damage to the driver’s side. All four of the SUV occupants were not physically injured.
The collision with the bus severely damaged the Buick and caused it to ignite. All of available police officers in the area, along with a few civilian bystanders, attempted to extricate the female driver from the vehicle but were unsuccessful.
Members of the Medicine Hat Fire Service attended to the scene were able to open the vehicle with specialized equipment and remove the driver.
The 58-year-old female driver of the vehicle was transported by EMS to the hospital with serious but not life threatening injuries. The driver of the transit bus received minor injuries and was transported by EMS to the hospital. Three members of the MHPS received smoke inhalation injuries for which they were all treated and released from hospital.
The MHPS Traffic Unit continues to investigate this incident. No further information will be released until the conclusion of the investigation.
NOTE: The MHPS utilized the MHPS Mobile App to notify the community about road closures resulting from this motor vehicle collision. The app is free to download and is available for both available for both Apple and Android devices.
S/Sgt Ryan Thorburn
Medicine Hat Police Service
Members of the MHPS are on scene at a motor vehicle collision on Dunmore Rd at 22nd Ave. The Southbound lane of Dunmore Rd is closed as a result Please avoid the area until further notice
UPDATE: Intersection is now clear. Further updates will be provided when available.
During the early morning hours of July 26, 1969, members of the Medicine Hat Police Service were called to the Savings Centre Grocery, located at 391 Aberdeen Street, to investigate a break and enter.
Twenty-five year old Constable Pat Flinn was the first officer to arrive on the scene and was confronted by Raymond Bradley and Victor Roeder, who were armed with a shotgun and .22 rifle. Cst. Flinn was forced to surrender his handgun and was taken hostage by the two gunmen and as back-up police officers arrived on the scene, they too were taken hostage.
In those days there was little to no training regarding hostage situations and there was no tactical team support. In total, five police officers were taken hostage, along with six civilians, who had inadvertently walked into the situation.
At one point, Victor Roeder held the barrel of a handgun to the neck of Constable Roy Funk and pulled the trigger. The bullet traveled up through Cst. Funk’s mouth and exited out the right side of his jaw. The bullet travelled through the crest of Cst. Flinn’s hat, dislodging it from his head.
A moment later, Bradley, in possession of Cst. Clayton Stobbs’ handgun, placed the barrel against Stobbs’stomach. In those days, officers sometimes kept the first chamber empty and when Bradley pulled the trigger, it clicked on the empty cylinder. Cursing the gun thinking that it had misfired, he aimed at a police car and fired a shot through the window, then swung around and aimed at Cst. Funk and fired a shot. The bullet smashed the wristwatch of Cst. Funk’s left wrist, traveled through the wrist, shattering the bone and penetrated the plate glass window behind his head.
When Chief Sam Drader arrived at the scene, he attempted to secure the release of other hostages by offering to be a hostage for their escape. The Chief’s offer was refused and he joined the others at gunpoint.
Sgt. Norm McLeod then arrived on the scene and Roeder started firing with two handguns as he ran across the intersection towards Sgt. McLeod, who returned the fire. During this time Cst. Bill Onslow arrived with a shotgun and fired twice at Roeder, one shot hitting him in the upper chest, killing him.
Eventually the remaining gunman, realizing his partner in crime had met his demise released all of the civilian hostages, but continued to hold the police officers, threatening to kill them. Chief Drader eventually negotiated with Bradley to release the other hostages in exchange for himself as hostage and driver of a getaway car. Leaving the scene in a police car, Chief Drader accompanied Bradley to the Flats area where they picked up Bradley’s wife, Janet and his father-in-law.
After a period of time, the four drove back to the scene, at which time Chief Drader managed to escape taking the keys from the car. Bradley, finding himself surrounded by police with no avenue of escape, surrendered.
On February 9, 1970, Raymond Maxwell Bradley entered guilty pleas to; Robbery with Violence and Cause Bodily Harm with Intent to Wound. He was sentenced to four and a half years, concurrent on each charge and was paroled on August 6, 1971.
Thinking back on the events of that day 50 years later, retired S/Sgt Flinn reflects “The thing I remember the most was standing in the grocery store with two armed men pointing their guns at us and watching tear gas containers skipping down the road past us. One of the bad guys shot my partner right in the face at point blank range, while we stood a foot apart. I didn’t realize until later that the reason my hat flew off was because one of the bullets that hit my partner went right through the crest of my cap”
Many things have changed in the years since the Aberdeen Street shootout. Immediately following the events of that day, the MHPS recognized the need for improved equipment and resources, which resulted in a better radio system and firearms and enhanced training for the officers. The officers who were not physically injured, including Cst Flinn, were required to report for duty the next day. It would take several years more before there was an understanding of the impacts of post-traumatic stress on first responders.
“Fifty years ago today, it was also Stampede week, and officers responded to a call not expecting problems, but then a major event happened that changed their lives forever” reflects current Chief Andy McGrogan, “in policing, you always must be prepared for the unexpected.”
Retired Sergeant Roy Funk and Staff Sergeant Patrick Flinn are both still enjoying a long and deserved retirement.
Administrative Services Manger
Medicine Hat Police Service
More than $42,000 worth of cash and drugs – including methamphetamine, cocaine and fentanyl – were seized as ALERT’s Medicine Hat organized crime team wrapped up a four-month investigation into drug trafficking activity. One person was arrested.
On July 22, 2019, with the help of the Medicine Hat Police Service, ALERT investigators executed search warrants on a residence and a vehicle in Medicine Hat. Between the two, they seized:
- 196 grams of methamphetamine;
- 67 grams of fentanyl;
- 48 grams of cocaine; and
- $5,680 cash proceeds of crime.
“The quantities of methamphetamine and cash seized are significant, and this is one of the larger seizures of fentanyl our team has made in Medicine Hat,” said Staff Sgt. Cory Both, ALERT Medicine Hat. “These drugs can be extremely dangerous, even in small amounts, so getting them off the streets of our community is a top priority.”
Theresa Babitzke, 54, has been charged with:
- possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking (x3);
- possession of proceeds of crime; and
- breach of recognizance (x3).
Members of the public who suspect drug or gang activity in their community can call local police, or contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477). Crime Stoppers is always anonymous. Medicine Hat residents can also submit tips anonymously through the Medicine Hat Police Service mobile app, which is free to download and available for both Apple and Android devices.
ALERT was established and is funded by the Alberta Government and is a compilation of the province’s most sophisticated law enforcement resources committed to tackling serious and organized crime. Members of Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, Lethbridge Police Service, Medicine Hat Police Service, and RCMP work in ALERT.
Media inquiries may be directed to:
Staff Sgt. Cory Both
Medicine Hat Organized Crime Team
Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT)