Police respond to death on steps of Alberta Legislature

Edmonton police were at the Alberta Legislature on Monday afternoon where a body could be seen underneath a blanket on the building's front steps.

Police spokesperson Scott Pattison said police were called to a "non-criminal event" at the legislature.

Legislature Speaker Nathan Cooper confirmed that an incident "involving a firearm" occurred just after 3 p.m.

A photograph by CBC legislature reporter Kim Trynacity shows a marked police van parked at the foot of the steps near a group of uniformed officers. Yellow police tape surrounds the scene.

Another photograph shows what appears to be a body on the lower steps, covered by a pink blanket or tarp.

Debate on Bill 207, a controversial bill on conscience rights for health-care providers, was underway when Speaker Nathan Cooper said an important issue had come up and that the House had to break for five minutes.

Cooper asked the government and opposition sides to go to their lounges.

The House was then adjourned until 7:30 p.m. for safety and security of the staff and MLAs. 

In an email to MLAs and staff, Cooper said anyone who needed to go to the nearby Federal Building should use the underground pedway that connects it to the legislature as police were expected to remain on the scene. 

Sheriffs are having people exit the legislature through the west doors of the building. 

Kim Trynacity/CBC

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For a list of 24-hour crisis centres in your area, visit the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention's website.

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