Police comb scene of 16-year-old's death in Hobbema, Alta.

RCMP investigators are combing the scene of a homicide at the Samson Cree townsite in Hobbema, Alta.

Police say they responded to a firearms complaint at 4:15 am Saturday morning.

Police say a 16-year-old boy was fatally injured.

Officers with the major crimes unit say the death may not have been the result of a random act and are investigating whether it was a gang-related incident.

Gang violence has plagued Hobbema for years, and residents of the area say that gang violence is a constant source of fear in the community.

A year ago, the Samson Cree First Nation voted to allow the eviction of gang members from the reserve at Hobbema, Alta.

At the time, about a dozen gangs were fighting for control over the drug trade in Hobbema's four First Nations, where more than half of the 14,000 residents are under 18 years old.

Drive-by shootings have been a problem since 2008, when a 23-month-old toddler was shot as she sat at the kitchen table eating supper. Asia Saddleback survived, but the bullet is permanently lodged between her liver and spine.

Since then there have been numerous other shootings. In some cases, people have been killed or wounded. In other cases, gang members have riddled homes with bullets.

Just last month, three youths were charged in the shooting death of five-year-old boy who died last summer.

The boy was shot in the head on July 11 while sleeping at his father's house in Hobbema.

A statement of facts filed in court said that the alleged shooters — a 13-year-old, a 16-year-old, and a 17-year-old — took turns firing at rifle aimed above the house and aimed at the house.

The three young offenders charged in that incident are all believed to have gang affiliations.

The Hobbema reserve is about 100 kilometres south of Edmonton.

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