September 25, 2018

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Charges laid in Mountie ambush

Four suspects charged in shooting, crime spree

An 18-year-old man from Sandy Bay First Nation has been charged as the triggerman in Wednesday’s ambush shooting of a Mountie on the outskirts of Riding Mountain National Park.

Therae Racette-Beaulieu faces two counts of attempted murder, alongside a slew of other charges. He was at large at the time of the attack, sought by the RCMP Portage la Prairie detachment for breaching court orders.

Cpl. Graeme Kingdon, 42, sustained “serious injuries” after he was shot in the “upper body” Wednesday night. Kingdon and his partner were ambushed after responding to a report of a break and enter near the small community of Onanole, located on the south edge of the popular national park and tourist destination.

The shooting set off an 18-hour manhunt that essentially put the western part of Manitoba on lockdown. The police operation came to a close in the nearby town of Neepawa, when a fourth and final suspect was taken into custody following a tense, dramatic standoff at a home in a quiet neighbourhood near an elementary school.

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An 18-year-old man from Sandy Bay First Nation has been charged as the triggerman in Wednesday’s ambush shooting of a Mountie on the outskirts of Riding Mountain National Park.

Therae Racette-Beaulieu faces two counts of attempted murder, alongside a slew of other charges. He was at large at the time of the attack, sought by the RCMP Portage la Prairie detachment for breaching court orders.

FACEBOOK</p><p>Tommy Edward Beaulieu</p>

FACEBOOK

Tommy Edward Beaulieu

Cpl. Graeme Kingdon, 42, sustained "serious injuries" after he was shot in the "upper body" Wednesday night. Kingdon and his partner were ambushed after responding to a report of a break and enter near the small community of Onanole, located on the south edge of the popular national park and tourist destination.

The shooting set off an 18-hour manhunt that essentially put the western part of Manitoba on lockdown. The police operation came to a close in the nearby town of Neepawa, when a fourth and final suspect was taken into custody following a tense, dramatic standoff at a home in a quiet neighbourhood near an elementary school.

In total, 21 charges have been laid against four men in connection with the shooting. They paint a picture of a minor crime spree that ended in violence.

Tommy Edward Beaulieu, 21, Shane Donovan Beaulieu, 30, and Delaney Marcus Houle, 23, all of Portage la Prairie, also face charges in the incident.

A social media page for Tommy Edward Beaulieu, which used a pseudonym, included many posts expressing disdain for law enforcement. Numerous posts contained statements such as: "I’m a thug," "kill kill," "wanted dead or alive" and "(expletive) the cops." One post on the page, which he liked, included the ominous message, "Shoot first ask questions later."

On Friday, RCMP refused to provide details on whether the firearm used in the attack was reported stolen. However, multiple area residents told the Free Press the suspects had taken the weapon used in the attack from a nearby home.

All four men have been detained in custody. The RCMP major crimes unit is continuing the investigation and has indicated more charges could be coming.

Shane Beaulieu appeared Friday in Brandon provincial court. The other three accused are scheduled to make their first appearances before a judge in a Brandon courtroom next Tuesday, following the long weekend.

Three of the four men have been charged with various weapons offences, although it remains unclear how many of those charges relate to firearms. All four have been charged with possession of stolen property.

RCMP</p><p>Therae Racette-Beaulieu</p>

RCMP

Therae Racette-Beaulieu

The events began when RCMP responded to a report of a possible break and enter in progress, shortly after 9:30 p.m. Wednesday in Onanole, about 260 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg.

"As soon as our officers exited the vehicle, they were shot at," RCMP assistant commissioner Scott Kolody told reporters Thursday.

The Mounties have yet to say how many shots were fired. Kingdon’s RCMP partner, who has not been named, was not injured in the attack. The officers did not return fire, police said.

Kingdon was taken to a nearby hospital, before being airlifted to Winnipeg. He remains in hospital and is recovering, RCMP said. The severity of his injuries has not been released.

Three of the four suspects were taken into custody shortly after the shooting, not far from where the incident took place; the fourth was arrested the following day in Neepawa.

— with files from Mike McIntyre and Ben Waldman

ryan.thorpe@freepress.mb.caTwitter: @rk_thorpe

Ryan Thorpe

Ryan Thorpe
Reporter

Ryan Thorpe likes the pace of daily news, the feeling of a broadsheet in his hands and the stress of never-ending deadlines hanging over his head.

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Updated on Saturday, September 1, 2018 at 7:41 AM CDT: Comment turned off.

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