Edmonton

Imitation firearm recovered after robbery suspect shot dead by Edmonton police: ASIRT

An imitation firearm was recovered from the scene after Edmonton police shot and killed an armed robbery suspect Wednesday in an incident that also led to the death of an innocent bystander.

Alberta police watchdog investigating deaths of suspect, 36, and bystander, 59

A 59-year-old resident manager inside a suite in this Edmonton apartment building at 10724 105th St. died after being hit by gunfire during a confrontation between city police and a suspected armed robber. The robbery suspect was also killed. (Jamie McCannel/CBC)

An imitation firearm was recovered from the scene after Edmonton police shot and killed an armed robbery suspect Wednesday in an incident that also led to the death of an innocent bystander.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) said Friday it has been directed to investigate the shooting deaths of a 36-year-old robbery suspect and a 59-year-old man who was shot while inside a nearby apartment suite.

The bystander was a resident manager in the building, according to a statement from a realty management company.

In a news release Friday detailing the events, ASIRT said Edmonton Police Service (EPS) officers responded to a report of an armed robbery at a liquor store near 113th Street and 104th Avenue around 6:25 p.m. Wednesday.

The caller said a man with a firearm had robbed the store before fleeing on foot, ASIRT said.

Just after 7 p.m., officers in the area of 107th Avenue and 105th Street spotted a man matching the robber's description. He fled north on 105th Street with officers in pursuit.

Two minutes later, on 107th Avenue near 105th Street, police had "a confrontation" with the suspect, ASIRT said.

"The officers discharged their firearms, striking the 36-year-old man."

Police provided first aid but the man was declared dead on scene, ASIRT said.

"An imitation firearm was located nearby," ASIRT said.

A 59-year-old man was found in medical distress in an apartment "adjacent to the confrontation," ASIRT said.

"Emergency first aid was provided for an apparent gunshot wound," ASIRT said. "EMS transported the 59-year-old man to a nearby hospital, but he was declared dead shortly after arriving."

Edmonton police have acknowledged that officers shot and killed the robbery suspect but have not commented on how the innocent bystander died.

At a news conference Thursday, EPS Chief Dale McFee was asked how the bystander was shot. 

"I would be guessing. There's so many things that could have happened," McFee said.

"I don't think it's fair to put that speculation right now."

ASIRT said it is trying to identify potential witnesses to the confrontation between the robbery suspect and police.

ASIRT investigates events where serious injury or death may have been caused by police, as well as serious or sensitive allegations of police misconduct.

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