Noise complaint gets huge RCMP response

Terry Roberts Transcontinental Media
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Police officers already taxed to their limits in the Trinity-Conception region were mobilized in large numbers Saturday morning in Brigus following a routine noise complaint that turned into something much bigger.

At about 7:30 a.m., the RCMP received a complaint of loud noises, including laughter, screaming and carrying on.

An officer responded, but when he approached a lone male standing near a campfire, the male refused to engage with the officer and walked into the woods.

Suspicious of the man’s behaviour, the officer decided to stay with his vehicle and called in backup, said RCMP spokesman Cpl. Paul Peddle.

“Considering everything that’s gone on, the officer called in help for safety reasons,” said Peddle, referencing the high-profile shooting in Moncton, N.B., last month that left three Mounties dead and two others wounded.

And the region remains on edge following a homicide in North River during the early hours of Sunday, June 28 that resulted in the death of Dale Porter. The case is still under investigation, though Peddle emphasized the incident in Brigus was in no way related to Porter’s death.

In short order, a heavy police response descended on Brigus, including a helicopter, a police service dog, and more than a dozen officers. Peddle said many officers were off duty at the time.

Around noon, Peddle said, two young adults were located, and the matter ended without incident.

So what motivated the lone male to walk away from the officer during the first encounter on Saturday morning?

Peddle said the two males had lit a campfire, and thought they were in trouble. For more than four hours, officers had no idea what they were dealing with, and word spread quickly throughout the town and beyond that a manhunt was ongoing. One resident said an officer told him to stay inside his house for his own safety.

Needless to say, Peddle said officers weren’t too impressed with the two young men.

“We deployed a lot of resources. We took this very seriously,” said Peddle. “It’s unfortunate we had to tie up so many resources.

“This could have been dealt with very easily and quickly had the person just come back. A minor file — a noise complaint, really — turned into something very big."

The Compass

Organizations: RCMP, The Compass

Geographic location: Brigus, Moncton, North River

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Recent comments

  • Marshall Art
    July 07, 2014 - 09:49

    Hindsight is always 20/20, isn't it ? It's easy after the fact, for people to criticize the reaction of the RCMP to the noise complaint in Brigus. The RCMP had no way of knowing, beforehand, that they were dealing with harmless 'campfire skeets'. The lone officer knew only that one young person acted suspiciously by walking into the woods when approached. Did anyone expect that officer to follow that person into the woods ? Too many RCMP officers have been slaughtered after walking into situations where they underestimated the danger involved. In this case, the RCMP's response was justified and they should be commended for it, not criticized.

  • loud but mute campfire skeets
    July 07, 2014 - 05:25

    I guess these loud but mute campfire skeets were not interested in meeting the nervous & armed RCMP to be the aural-polluting Saturday night special scapegoats for bored peace officers watching too much Sons of Anarchy and Wendy Mesley CBC. Is this convoluted story of putting it all on blink for a "lone male" teenager just an after-the-fact attempt at justifying a screw up and its resulting over&chopper-time? Can Mounties just get tranquillizer darts for these cases of reluctant private citizens in ambiguous situations that make RCMP nervous but are just outside of tazer range? It feels like they (FED GOV, RCMP Brass) are letting thievery and organized crime flourish to justify the police state with the added audacity of letting prisons overcrowd with victimless-crimes perpetrators. I'd rather be shot with one of these sleepy darts than be approached by nervous armed police. There is a huge disconnect in calling for backup and going on Dog and Heli-blink to find a (dumb?)mute campfire skeet. Bourque will be referenced every time the RCMP make a mistake and need an excuse to be heavy-handed at least until Harper is voted out. Nobody is impressed and we hope they perform better in the future and refrain from chasing harmless 'Skrealings' in the forest and send their whirly-bird after the Vikings and Home Invasion Specialists.