Case Snapshot
Case ID: 925
Classification: Shooting
Animal: horse
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Sunday, Jan 12, 2003


Disposition: Alleged

Alleged:
» Name Undisclosed
» Name Undisclosed
» Name Undisclosed
» Name Undisclosed

Four Bonnyville-area teens face a total of 67 criminal charges in connection with a series of shootings that killed three horses, injured another, and victimized several area businesses.

It seems the accused didn't intend to hurt anyone with what is believed to be a .22-calibre firearm, said Bonnyville RCMP Staff Sgt. Harold Thompson.

"It appeared they had managed to get access to firearms and ammunition and they were doing random shootings ... there was no indication they had any intent to do any damage other than to what they were shooting at.

"But of course, there was great concern a stray bullet could have caused injury to a person."

Robert Hollasch, whose mare Nifty was killed and another of his horses injured, said he doesn't buy the teens' excuse and may sue their parents for damages. He said he is still distraught over the whole incident.

"It hurts," he said, choking back tears. "I've only ridden once since it happened. It just turns my stomach.

"You get really connected to these horses."

RCMP say between Jan. 11-20, shots were fired at several horses, a couple of homes, several businesses and nearby parked vehicles. Many of the shots were fired from a car and a couple of firearms have since been seized.

Police estimate the damage - including the deaths of the animals - will total $30,000. Cops say the shootings aren't connected with horse shootings in Elk Point and Redwater.

Thompson said he hopes the community can now relax. Police ID'd the accused after receiving tips from the public.

Area resident Denise Scott, who owns horses, said she is pleased charges have been laid in the case because "people were on edge. People were worried about their horses."

The accused are all 17 years old, and they face numerous charges including careless use of a firearm, mischief endangering life, killing or injuring horses, mischief to property, and unlawful possession of a firearm.

The number of charges faced by each youth varies from three to 28, say police. The accused are to appear in Bonnyville youth court on March 18.

References

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