A 30-year-old Somali refugee faces numerous charges, including participation in a terrorist activity, for Saturday’s violence in Edmonton as crowds were leaving the Eskimos CFL football game.
Abdulahi Hasan Sharif was arrested with a flag for the Islamic State group in one of his vehicles.
He’s accused of ramming a police cruiser and stabbing an officer, as well as driving a U-Haul into pedestrians, injuring four.
Regina’s Police chief says no matter how prepared police are for major events, there remains the possibility there could be a situation like what occured Saturday in Edmonton.
Chief Bray says this becoming a new reality for Canada’s police.
“I think the unfortunate reality is every time you have an event like this, it shapes the new world,” Bray said. “It shapes things differently. Things are being done differently. More restrictions, more checks. It’s ever-evolving in terms of safety.”
Bray says this type of situation requires a different approach to policing. adding officers in the country are well-trained, but they might need to be gently reminded of the basics.
“Remind them to go back to basic training,” Bray said. “And I’m not saying that would have changed the situation in Edmonton. Even how you position yourself tactically, to understand not only the people who might be in front of you, but the public who might be outside of that.”
Bray says the officer involved in the accident was doing what was necessary that night outside Commonwealth Stadium.
“I think if you look at what that officer was doing, he was out, on duty, for an event. ” Chief Bray told 620 CKRM News. “They had barricades there and really what officers are doing are providing is a barrier to the event. Between the general public and people that are attending an event.”
R-C-M-P say the suspect was investigated in 2015 for extremist leanings, but was deemed not to be a threat.