Morinville – RCMP members deployed from various detachments were kept very busy at the Boonstock Music festival over the Canada Day weekend. A significantly increased RCMP presence at Boonstock this year allowed officers to pro-actively enforce contraventions of the provincial Gaming and Liquor Act, federal Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and the Criminal Code, in addition to calls for service made through 911 to the Boonstock grounds. A final tally of the offences is still being prepared, but at this time the RCMP can confirm the following:
On the morning of Saturday June 29th, a person was found unresponsive on the ground by patrolling RCMP members. The Emergency Medical personnel at Boonstock were called and remained on scene for over an hour attempting to stabilize the patient before taking the person to an Edmonton hospital. The person was in a very serious state but Emergency Room, and later ICU personnel, were able to treat the person and this person is expected to make a full recovery.
In the late evening of Saturday June 29th, two adult males wandered away from the Boonstock site and broke into an area residence. The residence was occupied at the time and the occupants were able to call 911 and nearby family for assistance. By the time RCMP officers arrived the victims had restrained one suspect and provided a description of the other suspect that resulted in his arrest a short distance away. Both are charged with breaking and entering. One of the males was also in possession of drugs when he was arrested. Both males remain in custody and have not spoken to bail.
In the early morning hours of Sunday June 30th, RCMP members patrolling the campground interrupted what they believed to be a drug trafficking transaction that resulted in the seizure of a loaded, semi-automatic handgun, a large bear-spray canister, cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, and ecstasy, in quantities consistent with trafficking.
Justin Connors (23) of Edmonton is facing 19 charges including 5 counts of Possession of a Controlled Substance for the Purpose of Trafficking, 1 count of Possession of a Prohibited Weapon, 3 counts of Breach of Probation and various weapons charges. He has been remanded in custody and will appear in Morinville Provincial Court July 4.
During the course of the Boonstock Festival, the RCMP were called to assist with 11 Overdose calls. RCMP also dealt with 11 traffic complaints, 3 impaired driving complaints, 2 sexual assaults, 2 hit and run complaints, 11 assaults including assaults with a weapon, 4 theft complaints, 55 Gaming and Liquor Act complaints, and made 45 illicit drug seizures. 56 people from Boonstock were arrested for various offences. RCMP also estimate that over 2000 verbal warnings for Unlawful Consumption of Liquor and other Gaming and Liquor Act offences were given.
Although Boonstock is now over, there remains significant work for the Morinville RCMP detachment as investigations initiated at Boonstock transition to local RCMP members, and court appearances for those charged occur in Morinville Provincial Court.