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No investigation into RCMP use of conducted energy weapon in arrest of metal pipe-wielding suspect on Alberta First Nation

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CALGARY –

RCMP officials say the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team will not be investigating an officer whose actions during a recent arrest on a southern Alberta First Nation have been criticized online.

Mounties have now released video stills of the arrest in an attempt to provide additional context.

RCMP have released a Watchguard video still of a man armed with a metal pipe, said to be suspect Dylan Bird, threatening an RCMP member during a Nov. 23 arrest on the Kainai Nation. (supplied: RCMP)

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According to RCMP, a member of the Cardston RCMP detachment was in Moses Lake on the Kainai Nation in southern Alberta, in cooperation with the local Blood Tribe Police Service, on the morning of Nov. 23 in search of undisclosed individuals wanted on outstanding warrants.

The officer spotted 27-year-old Dylan Riley Bird, who he recognized as being wanted for several offences, walking along the road.

The RCMP member attempted to arrest Bird but soon noticed that the wanted man was holding a long metal pipe. Bird was directed to drop the pipe but he did not comply and proceeded to strike the officer with the weapon.

RCMP say the officer deployed his conducted energy weapon twice.

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“Both the first and second deployments of the conducted energy weapon were unsuccessful in gaining control of the subject,” said Sgt. Robert Wright of the Cardston RCMP detachment in a video statement. “The officer called for assistance and a nearby officer immediately attended the location to assist in the suspect’s arrest.

“As the subject continued to be combative and resistant, officers used force to take him into custody. The subject received a medical assessment at scene and treatment, and was found fit to be released into police custody.”

Bird, a member of the Kainai Nation, faces new charges related to:

  • Two counts of assaulting a peace officer causing bodily harm;
  • Assaulting a peace officer;
  • Obstruction; and.
  • Failing to comply with a release order.

At the time of his arrest, he was wanted on charges of:

  • Uttering threats;
  • Criminal harassment; and,
  • Mischief.

The RCMP member who had been struck with the metal pipe was taken to hospital for treatment of his injuries and later released.

Bird has been released from custody ahead of his scheduled Dec. 13 appearance in Cardston provincial court.

RCMP officials confirmed Sunday night that the Director of Law Enforcement was notified of the deployment of a conducted energy weapon and use of force in the arrest of Bird. The matter was “deemed out of scope” and the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team will not investigate this matter.

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Two images captured by the Watchguard camera installed in the RCMP vehicle have been released and RCMP officials say an internal review will be conducted to “gather a full account of what took place during this incent.”

Claims of police brutality have circulated on social media in connection with Bird’s arrest and a protest has been planned for Monday afternoon.

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