Calgary

Calgary shootings more than double what they were last year

In the first six months of this year Calgary has experienced 51 shootings, more than twice the 23 seen last year in the same period, but 2019 still falls short of the record year the city saw in 2015 with 56 shootings, police told CBC News.

City had 51 shootings in the first 6 months of 2019, compared with 23 in the same period last year

Just Wednesday night, police responded to a shooting outside a convenience store on 64th Street N.E. but the suspects were gone when they arrived. (Andrew Brown/CBC)

In the first six months of this year Calgary has seen 51 shootings, more than twice the 23 seen last year in the same period, but 2019 still falls short of the record year the city saw in 2015 with 56 shootings, police told CBC News.

The 2019 numbers break down as follows: Three shootings were fatal leaving four dead in total, 18 involved non-fatal injuries and 30 involved property damage. 

Police say the 2015 numbers were around the time fentanyl exploded on the Calgary landscape and shootings, in general, continue to be influenced by fentanyl and other opioids.

Just Wednesday night, police responded to a shooting outside a convenience store on 64th Street N.E. but the suspects were gone when they arrived.

Uphill battle

Staff Sgt. Greg Cooper says unfortunately that happens a lot.

"Which creates an uphill battle right off the bat for investigators," Cooper told CBC News.

"Much of the conflict to date we believe is related to the drug trade and that high-risk lifestyle," he said.

While fentanyl is still a big factor, methamphetamine is also on the rise.

But Cooper says the specific type of drug, is less the issue.

"How are they going to obtain and make money, and that's what draws the people that are involved in that high-risk criminal lifestyle, which puts them at risk for violence."

With files from Reid Southwick

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