Dramatic video of rescue released by Saskatoon police
Aerial video shows five people rescued during armed standoff
Saskatoon police released a dramatic video Thursday that was taken during a three-hour standoff in Saskatoon last week.
The video, taken from a police airplane, shows the rescue of five people who fled from a north-end home where a man was armed with a rifle.
Police said the decision to release the video was to show people that their use of an armoured tactical vehicle vehicle that night was necessary and worthwhile.
Sgt. Wade Bourassa was flying the police aircraft, a Cessna 182, which captured the pictures.
"This is just a really good example of the equipment that is used, the communication [and] the teamwork that is required," Bourassa said at a media conference Thursday.
Another officer, Sgt. Ken Kane, was on the ground that night.
"What sticks with me from that call that day was seeing the absolute sheer terror on the faces of the kids and the female, especially," Kane said, referring to the people who were in the home with the armed man.
Police were responding to a call on the evening of Aug. 22 to investigate an alleged assault against a woman in a home on the 300 block of Coppermine Crescent.
According to police, the woman was able to escape the home, but a man shot at her from inside the house.
With help from the tactical support unit, crisis negotiators and their explosive disposal unit, police were able to convince the man to surrender at about 10 p.m. CST. That happened after police asked the city to cut power to the area.
Their response to the call included bringing in an armoured vehicle, dubbed the Bearcat. The Bearcat cost the department $350,000. They say the heavily reinforced vehicle saved the lives of everyone involved in the incident; two men, one woman and two children, both under the age of 10.
The Bearcat, Kane said, allowed police to get the group out of harm's way.
"[That] is what that vehicle was designed for," he said. "This vehicle saved lives."
Police also released the video of the arrest.
The accused gunman is facing a number of charges, including three counts of attempted murder relating to the woman and two police officers, assaulting a police officer and a number of weapons-related charges.