A man who is about 20 years old is in police custody in Iqaluit after shots were fired at the Kimmirut detachment early Saturday morning.
Police say RCMP officers in Kimmirut — about 120 kilometres from Iqaluit — were awoken at 2 a.m. local time Saturday by an intoxicated woman banging on the door of one officer’s residence. She told them they were in danger.
"The police officers immediately brought her back to the detachment for her own safety and well-being," said Supt. Hilton Smee at a news conference in Iqaluit Saturday afternoon.
"While in the process of looking after her, a male suspect shot multiple rounds of gunfire at the detachment, which struck the building, the police truck, the windows, resulting in considerable damage."
With both Mounties and the young woman holed up inside, a group of about 10 residents came to the rescue. They carried out what police described as a citizens' arrest, subduing the alleged shooter and securing the rifle.
Smee said they risked their lives in a very dangerous situation, and he thanked them for their help.
"I want to stress that the deliberate hunting of our members — shooting at their residences and at their places of work —ultimately risk the safety of its residents and it is deeply disturbing," he said.
"It's very clear for us that there is tremendous support within the community of Kimmirut — there just happens to be some individuals who have decided to take this very drastic action against police officers."
Const. Douglas Scott, 20, was shot dead in Kimmirut in November 2007 while he was responding to an impaired driving call. Since then, there have been two separate incidents of shots being fired at the RCMP officers’ residence in the community.
Smee said alcohol was a factor in Saturday’s incident. Kimmirut recently received a shipment of alcohol.
Four members of the RCMP's Emergency Response Team responded to the shooting from Iqaluit arriving at 4 a.m. Some of those members are still in the community helping with the investigation.
There were two Mounties in Kimmirut — Cpl. Wendy Cornell, who has15 years experience, and Const. Allan Jagoe, who has 36 years experience. They have now been relieved by two other Mounties for the time being.
The RCMP also said gunfire struck some NorthwesTel equipment, leaving parts of Kimmirut without telephone service. There have been reports of problems trying to telephone the community from Iqaluit. RCMP said they've been told NorthwesTel technicians were working to make repairs.
The investigation is ongoing and no charges have been laid.