Latest weekend shootings raising concerns among Regina citizens

A handful of shootings in the Queen City over the last couple days may have residents wondering about their own safety.

Police in Regina are continuing to investigate a number of firearm offences that have taken place in different parts of the city since Saturday night.

They occurred around the same time Statistics Canada released their report of police-related crime statistics from 2018, showing a 30-per-cent increase in total firearm offences last year in Regina compared to numbers from 2017.

So should citizens be concerned with the latest round of shootings in Regina?

Chief Evan Bray for the Regina Police Service admitted that firearm offences have been a problem in the city for the last couple years. However, there’s more at play than what people may think.

Bray explained how these shootings are usually not random and that more often than not there is some sort of connection or relationship between those who are involved.

“I think it’s too early to say questions like if it’s gang related because that’s something we obviously throw that lens over every time we investigate those crimes to see if there’s an element of that,” said Bray.

“Gangs and drugs are very closely related to the firearm challenges that we have in our city.”

While one or more of this past weekend’s shootings may very well be connected to gang or drug activity, some may be wondering how the suspects manage to get ahold of firearms to commit these offences in different parts the city.

Bray suggested that there are different answers to that questions.

“So in Saskatchewan, without having data to support it, I can tell you that a lot of firearms are stolen from break and enters, whether it’s in our city or other parts of Saskatchewan,” he said. “They’re not necessarily ones that are being brought across the border.”

Bray added how transported firearms from across the border seem to be a problem in larger Canadian centres such as Toronto and the lower mainland in British Columbia.

There are no significant updates from this weekend’s incidents at this time.

 

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