Police charge man with setting fire to Calgary memorial for residential school victims

·1 min read
A memorial to victims of the residential school system at City Hall in downtown Calgary was damaged by fire last month. ( Mark Matulis/CBC - image credit)
A memorial to victims of the residential school system at City Hall in downtown Calgary was damaged by fire last month. ( Mark Matulis/CBC - image credit)

A man has been charged after a fire was set last month at a memorial honouring residential school victims outside Calgary City Hall.

On Aug. 3, just before 11:30 p.m., city corporate security saw closed-circuit video of a man trying to light the memorial on fire before fleeing, police said.

Calgary police and firefighters arrived to find shoes and other objects at the memorial heavily damaged.

After security footage of the suspect was released, investigators were able to identify and locate the man due to tips from the public.

Police have not named the accused on grounds that the person has mental health and medical challenges believed to have contributed to his actions.

Support is available for anyone affected by their experience at residential schools, and those who are triggered by the latest reports.

A national Indian Residential School Crisis Line has been set up to provide support for survivors and those affected. People can access emotional and crisis referral services by calling the 24-hour national crisis line: 1-866-925-4419.

Distress Centre Calgary is also available 24/7 at 403-266-4357, Awo Taan Healing Lodge Society at 403-531-197 and CPS Victim Assistance Support Team at 403-428-8398.

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