Mayor says shocked Stettler still ‘a safe community’

Town advocates say Stettler remains a safe community, even after an innocent woman was shot outside an industrial business

  • May. 30, 2012 6:00 p.m.

Catherine Wishart

Town advocates say Stettler remains a safe community, even after an innocent woman was shot outside an industrial business Monday morning.

“We are very fortunate in Stettler that we live in a safe community,” Stettler Mayor Dick Richards said Tuesday.

“(But) you can never be prepared for a random act of violence.”

The victim, a mother in her 30s, appears to be on her way to recovery, though she remains hospitalized in Calgary.

“First and foremost, our thoughts go out to the victim,” Richards of the woman, identified as Krista Dryden.

He commended Stettler RCMP and other police agents for their concerted efforts to prevent Monday’s incident from injuring other innocent people.

“We thank the RCMP for not having any further violence in this situation,” Richards said.

The incident alarmed residents Monday and it took another turn early that evening when the gunman took his own life, police reported.

As a longtime resident of Stettler, Richards couldn’t recall the last time the town experienced a shooting.

“For generations, (the RCMP) have provided professional policing services for all Canadians and we are fortunate to have them as part of this community,” the mayor said.

For students, local schools were placed under voluntary lockdown as the event unfolded from Stettler to the Castor area throughout the day.

“We were taking all precautions,” said John Bailey, the superintendent of the Clearview School Division.

“Students and staff handled the situation very well and they were very cooperative, and we are very proud of them.”

When the news of the shortly broke shortly after the school day began, Clearview locked down Stettler Elementary School, Stettler Middle School and William E. Hay Composite High School.

By about 10:30 a.m., the lockdown was lifted when Clearview officials learned that the suspect had led police on a hot pursuit east on Highway 12 toward Castor.

At that time, schools in Byemoor, Gus Wetter in Castor, Brownfield and Coronation were locked down unit about 1:30 p.m., Bailey said.

“The police didn’t tell us to do it. We just took these precautionary steps.”

As students in Stettler schools, the victim’s children were especially cared for, Bailey said.

“Our staff worked very well with the family.”

One neighbour questioned the safety of the community.

“This is a small town,” said Catherine Wishart, who saw some of the action unfold near her home just east of town.

“For something like this to happen in Stettler, this makes no sense.”

Living in a peaceful neighbourhood, she wonders whether the shooting could have happened to her or anyone else on that day.

“If it were random, could it have been us, or somebody else?” said Wishart, who described the scene to the Independent as her two her-old son Landon rode his tricycle.

Police confirm the incident was random and reports indicate the victim did not know the shooter.

RICHARD FROESE, Independent reporter

Just Posted

Easter visit!

Easter Bunny makes a visit to Points West Living

Scenes from the Stettler & District Music Festival

Don’t forget to check out the Grand Concert on April 28th

Happy Easter everyone!

Youngsters are excited for the holiday

UCP candidate Nate Horner triumphs in Drumheller-Stettler riding

Horner looking forward to moving ahead with UCP policies in the coming months

Kenney talks pipelines with Trudeau after election win, calls it cordial

Almost a year ago Kenney dismissed Trudeau as a dilettante and a lightweight

Avalanche hot at the right time, cruise past Flames into second round

Avalanche onto second round with a 5-1 win over the Calgary Flames in Game 5

Parents say Austrian climber missing in Banff National Park ‘lived his dream’

David Lama, Hansjorg Auer and American climber Jess Roskelley have been missing since Wednesday

Six months after legalization, high prices and supply issues boost illicit pot market

It has been six months since Canada became the first industrialized country to legalize recreational cannabis

Kirkland Signature veggie burgers recalled due to possible metal fragments

Recalled products came in 1.7 kg packages with a best before date of Apr. 23, 2019

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Storms blast South, where tornadoes threaten several states

9.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia at a moderate risk of severe weather

Private cargo ship brings Easter feast to the space station

There are three Americans two Russians and one Canadian living on the space station

Notre Dame rector: “Computer glitch” possible fire culprit

The fire burned through the lattice of oak beams supporting the monument’s vaulted stone ceiling

Undercover cops don’t need warrant to email, text suspected child lurers: court

High court decision came Thursday in the case of Sean Patrick Mills of Newfoundland

Most Read