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Emotions still percolating in High River ....
The Civilian Review and Complaints Commission for the RCMP previously reported that firearms were improperly seized by officers during High River's flood response, but for those still up in arms about the search and seizure process, a recent town hall provided them a voice.
A small gathering of concerned residents met in Little Bow Park on July 19 to listen to four speakers, many of whom continue to speak out against RCMP actions during the flood crisis.
In a document provided to the Times, organizers Richard Miller and Bobbe Cummins addressed why they felt it was necessary to host the town hall.
“What has happened here in High River sets precedent for what will be done in the future in emergency situations right across this country,” as written in the letter.
“We owe it to the rest of Canada to make sure that we don't just move on or just hope that things will be done differently in the next situation.”
Dennis Young, a member of the Calgary RCMP Veterans Association and honorary life member of the National Firearms Association (NFA), was among the guests invited to speak.
“Something went horribly wrong in High River,” he said. “I am so upset by what happened because in a state of emergency, if it happens in Airdrie, is it going to happen to me?”
RCMP officers entered 4,666 homes and forced their way into more than 754 of those homes, according to the commission's findings. Some 38 people were found and 700 pets were rescued.
“Don't hold the 273 Mounties that kicked in your doors, entered your homes, searched your homes and took your property, don't hold those people as a standard for Mounties across Canada,” Young said.
He shared admiration for the RCMP, who protect individuals each and every day, but noted he has zero respect for those who called for these actions or the Alberta government ministers who supported it.
Young thanked Sun News for their coverage of the incident and thanked Brian Lilley, former host of that network's Byline television show, and columnist Lorne Gunter for their efforts.
Lilley, who co-founded Rebel Media, attended as event master of ceremonies. He said a section in the Alberta Emergency Management Act says nothing shall trump the charter or Alberta's Bill of Rights ....