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Police investigate poaching complaints

Rimbey Mounties responded to 40 calls for service last week.

Highlights of the week include extensive work being done on cold cases, chasing down wanted persons, apprehending mental health patients, searching for stolen property and other criminal matters.

Poaching complaint investigated

On Feb. 23 police were dispatched to a farm located on the Centerview Road to a complaint of trespassing, property damage and theft of diesel from a John Deere tractor. Sometime during the previous night, a vehicle had driven through a barbed wire gate onto the farmer’s private land. The investigation revealed that wildlife had been feeding in the field during the night and the suspect vehicle had left a piece of its grill at the scene after hitting the wire fence when entering the property. It was not known at the time if any wildlife had been poached but diesel fuel was missing from a tractor located in the same field. RCMP notified Alberta Fish and Wildlife who also sent an officer to investigate the matter in the event this was a case of poaching.

During the evening of Feb. 24, at approximately 8 p.m., a Rimbey RCMP officer who was conducting surveillance in the field observed the same suspect vehicle that had previously driven through the barbed wire gate return to shine its headlights on the wildlife feeding in the field. The officer, hiding in the dark, stopped the suspect who turned out to be a person known by the landowner and was not poaching.

In any event, poaching has been an issue in the Centerview/Highway 12 area this past year. Police and fish and wildlife officers will continue to work hard on catching those responsible for shooting wildlife at night and wasting edible meat.

Woman charged in theft from hotel

Also on Feb. 23, officers arrested a 43-year-old woman for possession of stolen property. Police were called earlier in the day to a theft that had occurred at a local hotel. The investigation led police to a residence in Rimbey where all the stolen property was located and seized by police. The accused has been charged in this case and will appear in court in Rimbey on May 6.

Car stolen from school

On Feb. 24, between 3:30 and 4:30 p.m, a gold 2001 Toyota Camry with Alberta licence plate WRN631 was stolen from Rimbey Elementary School.

Suspected fraudster in court

A special sitting of court was held last week for a trial in which Michael Maupin, 33, a former resident of the Rimbey area, is on trial for 14 counts of theft, fraud and other serious matters. The trial is scheduled to continue on Oct. 25.

Help needed with vandalism investigation

Police continue to investigate the senseless act of vandalism that occurred on or about Feb. 12 at the Gimlet Community Center at the Gimlet Rodeo Grounds. Vandals smashed out the building windows causing thousands of dollars of damage. Police encourage anyone with information as to who is responsible for this crime to call the detachment or Crime Stoppers.

Well, they are portable toilets

On a lighter note, police were nearly involved in an abduction case at an oil lease site. A service company attended a lease site and hooked up to a trailer that carried two portable toilets. The trailer was hooked up and halfway down the driveway when a man appeared from the portable toilet in a panic.

Since portable toilets do not come with seat belts, it is fortunate in this case that the man was seen waving his arms madly in the air before they made it to the highway.

If you have any information on these or any other crimes, please call the Rimbey RCMP at (403) 843-2224 or Crime Stoppers at1-800-222-8477, #8477 on Telus Mobility or *8477 on Rogers AT&T.