RCMP Respond to Firearm Incident in Smoky Lake County
Eastern Alberta RCMP
Smoky Lake, Alta. – On Feb. 14, 2022, at approximately 5:20 a.m., Alberta RCMP from Smoky Lake; St. Paul; Lac La Biche, and Bonnyville Detachments with the assistance of Red Water RCMP Integrated Traffic Unit and Eastern Alberta RCMP Crime Reduction Unit responded to a rural residence on Highway 28 in Smoky Lake County for a reported disturbance. A distraught male was reported to be assaultive and discharging a firearm.
En-route to the scene police learned the male subject was threatening to shoot officers upon their arrival. Five occupants were known to be inside the residence and unable to safely leave.
RCMP Police Dog Services and RCMP Emergency Response Team were engaged to respond to the incident. Smoky Lake RCMP also activated the Rural Alberta Provincial Integrated Defence Response (RAPID) program, seeking the deployment of Alberta Fish and Wildlife.
RAPID Response works to assist the RCMP in providing a more expedited law enforcement response to Albertans’ emergency calls for service in areas where a Fish and Wildlife Officer may be better positioned to offer a timely response.
At approximately 7 am, before the arrival of the additional resources, the male pointed a firearm at officers who had established containment of the area. Also, prior to support officers arriving the male, having discarded the firearm, walked from the residence and confronted officers while brandishing a knife. Police told the male he was under arrest however the male failed to follow police commands, to drop the knife and surrender.
The male subject turned away from police and walked towards the residence, where the occupants had remained. Police feared for the safety of those inside the home and the officers on scene as the male continued brandishing his knife.
Police utilized a police vehicle to intercept the male causing him to fall. The male threw the knife at officers then further resisted officers as they brought him under control and into custody.
A firearm, ammunition and two knives was seized at the time of the arrest.
Upon checking on the welfare of the occupants of the residence it was learned two of them had been assaulted.
No other homes are in the immediate area of the residence. No one was harmed as a result of the discharge of the firearm.
The male subject was taken to hospital for treatment of a minor injury prior to being transported to the Smoky Lake RCMP detachment.
An officer also had his injuries assessed at hospital and has returned to work.
Richard Dale Halfe (37), of Smoky Lake, Alta. has been charged with 21 offences, including:
- Recklessly discharging a firearm
- Assault with a weapon, Assault causing bodily harm and Assault while choking/strangling victim
- Pointing a firearm (x2)
- Assault Police Officer (x2)
- Resist arrest (x2)
- Uttering Threats (x2)
Halfe remains in custody following adjournment of a judicial hearing for his release. Halfe is scheduled to appear in Fort Saskatchewan Provincial Court on Feb. 17, 2022.
Smoky Lake and Eastern Alberta District RCMP continue to investigate the incident.
As this matter is before the court no further information can be released.