There are mixed emotions in a small Alberta town after Mounties said an alleged attack on a 20-year-old woman in Edson, just three days after a 14-year-old girl was slain, never happened.
Emily Stauffer was killed Sept. 27 while walking along a path in a wooded area.
A second attack was also alleged to have occurred on a walking path, but police now say they have determined the claim was "frivolous."
The second alleged attack put the small community on edge. Schools were locked down, hockey practice was cancelled and many parents chose to keep their children inside.
Police said circumstances, which they wouldn't disclose, combined with Stauffer's death, might have led the woman to make the false report.
Police said they do not plan to lay public mischief charges.
Mayor Greg Pasychny said the community is both angry and relieved to hear the second attack was made up.
"I was talking to some people in the corner store the other day and there was a lot of fear, and we thought we had this predator in our community," he said.
"It's a horrible thing that happened, it's a true tragedy and at the end of the day people are a little bit relieved that there's only one incident that we're dealing with now instead of two."
Pasychny is encouraging Edson's residents to return to their normal routines. Both he and police are asking the public not to chastise the young woman who made the false complaint.
Police in Edson continue to search for Stauffer's killer.
Edson is approximately 200 kilometres west of Edmonton.