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Search warrant offers details of alleged attack in Yellowknife with machete, loaded pistol, baseball bat

A police account of an investigation into an alleged assault in Yellowknife paints a startling picture of the violence often associated with the hard drug trade.

Three accused facing mandatory minimum of five years for robbery using a firearm

A police account of an investigation into an alleged assault in Yellowknife paints a startling picture of the violence often associated with the hard drug trade. (Walter Strong/CBC)

WARNING: This article contains graphic details of violence.

A police account of an investigation into an alleged assault in Yellowknife paints a startling picture of the violence often associated with the hard drug trade.

In a court document, police say three men attacked a woman with a baseball bat and a machete and pointed a gun at her head. The RCMP say the men suspected the woman had stolen some of their cocaine.

The information is contained in an application the RCMP made for a warrant to search phones they seized during their investigation of the assault. None of the information in the document has been proven in court.

According to a summary of the investigation, the RCMP first got involved when a woman with a noticeable limp came to the Yellowknife detachment on Nov. 4, 2021.  She said she had been assaulted by three men in her Garden Townhomes unit three days earlier.

She said the three men were staying in the townhouse, but suddenly took her to a room where they accused her of stealing two ounces of crack cocaine. She said they pistol whipped her, beat her with the bat, cut her feet with a machete and then used it to cut off some of her hair. She said they also pointed a handgun at her face. 

Police say the woman told them her attackers stole her phone and identification and threatened to kill her if she did not pay them $6,000, or if she went to police.

Arrests

The RCMP say they went to the townhouse that day, and immediately saw a man sitting in the back of a cab parked outside who matched the description of one of the men the woman said attacked her.

When a police officer went to arrest Abdulrasaq Ahme Yousif, he kicked the officer in the groin and punched him in an attempt to get away, according to the search warrant.

The fight continued until other officers arrived and put the 18-year-old in handcuffs. The RCMP say they found a loaded revolver on Yousif when they searched him. The gun matched the firearm the woman described as being used in the attack on her.

Shortly after, another man matching one of the descriptions provided by the woman, arrived in a cab. Yaha Musa Abdullahi, 18, was arrested without incident. Police say they found "a large quantity" of crack cocaine on him, as well as two cellphones.

According to the search warrant, one of the officers then went to the front door of the townhouse. A woman answered and said there was no one else in the house. When advised the RCMP were going to get a search warrant for the unit and that she had to leave, the woman said she had to get some of her belongings and tried to shut the door as the officer was talking to her.

At that moment, the officer saw the shadow of a man heading upstairs and into a room and heard a loud noise from the second floor. Fearing the man was trying to dispose of evidence, the police officer pushed his way in and found the man, later identified as 21-year-old Akok Aken, in the upstairs bathroom. 

3 men each facing 14 charges

The RCMP say that during a search of the townhouse that evening, they found two machetes, strands of cut hair, more than 64 grams of crack cocaine, $9,000 in cash, a money counting machine and more than 15 cellphones.

The three men are each facing 14 charges, including extortion, assault with a weapon, assault causing bodily harm and robbery using a firearm, which carries a minimum sentence of five years in prison.

Yousif is facing an additional six charges including assaulting a peace officer, resisting arrest and pointing a firearm.

The three have waived their right to a preliminary inquiry. No date has been set for their trial.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Richard Gleeson is a reporter for CBC in Yellowknife. He covers a wide variety of issues, including politics, the justice system and the environment.

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