Saskatchewan

Sask. RCMP ends shelter-in-place alert around La Ronge, multiple people in custody

Saskatchewan RCMP have ended a dangerous persons with firearms alert for the area around La Ronge, saying multiple people are in custody.

Residents were urged to shelter in place, children's festival was shut down

RCMP issued a photo of one of the suspects being sought in La Ronge, Sask., area on Sunday. (RCMP)

A shelter-in-place alert for communities around La Ronge, Sask., has been cancelled.

RCMP said earlier officers came under fire on Sunday, and urged residents in the communities about 300 kilometres northeast of Saskatoon to shelter in place while 2 men armed with handguns were sought.

Just after 5:30 PM CST the alert was cancelled. RCMP said multiple people had been taken into custody but nobody had been injured.

One man whose photo was released by RCMP has not yet been located, or his identity confirmed.

He's described as a man with short, dark hair with the sides shaved, wearing dark pants and a dark shirt with gold patterns down the sleeves, and dark runners.

He was last seen on foot in the area of Far Reserve Road and that there was a possible sighting of the suspect going north on Highway 2, RCMP said.

Motorists are being advised to not stop for hitchhikers, and contact police immediately if he is seen. He's considered dangerous and should not be approached.

RCMP said there will be a heavy police presence in La Ronge and surrounding communities as the investigation continues.

Children's festival shut down

La Ronge had been hosting its annual children's festival, which started at noon, but organizers paused the event and sent everyone home after the RCMP alert. It was officially shut down at 2:45. 

Viviana Ruiz Arcand, one of the festival organizers, says she heard police sirens but not near the event.

However, she wasn't taking any chances when it comes to safety.

"We just proceeded to make a general announcement on the stage of the children's festival to say that we're postponing until we get an all-clear from the authorities," Ruiz Arcand said.

Ruiz Arcand says the event usually draws about 500 people throughout the day, and people who didn't get the alert are being sent home.

Ruiz Arcand says performers were brought in from across the province for the event. For now, she says, the festival is on hold for the day, and organizers are already working on a rescheduling plan.

"A smaller scale version might happen if you can't get it back up and going," Ruiz Arcand said.

now