RCMP officer involved in Grand Falls-Windsor fatal shooting, SIRT investigating

·3 min read
A house on Monchy Road in Grand Falls-Windsor is taped off Friday morning following a fatal shooting involving a police officer. (Anthony Germain/CBC - image credit)
A house on Monchy Road in Grand Falls-Windsor is taped off Friday morning following a fatal shooting involving a police officer. (Anthony Germain/CBC - image credit)
Anthony Germain/CBC
Anthony Germain/CBC

On a quiet street in Grand Falls-Windsor, Byron Boyd was woken up by loud voices around 3 a.m. Friday morning followed by "two pops" which he says he's assuming were gun shots.

A media release from the civilian investigative agency, led by director and lawyer Mike King, offered few details about what happened other than an RCMP officer was "involved" in the fatal shooting in Grand Falls-Windsor, and that the RCMP notified SIRT early Friday morning. The statement did not say how many have died or when, or the conditions under which the shooting occurred.

On Friday Newfoundland and Labrador's serious-incident response team (SIRT) said a lethal interaction between an RCMP police officer and an unknown number of people is under investigation.

Boyd told CBC News he heard an ambulance arrive at the scene a few minutes after he heard the noise. He said he looked outside and saw paramedics entering the home with their gear and four police officers on site.

"The paramedics came outside to get more gear, went back in, and then a few minutes later came back outside," Boyd said.

"At that point, when they don't bring anybody out of the house, you kind of start to think that there might be something wrong, something serious happened."

Multiple neighbours tell CBC News they believe it was a domestic-related incident as they heard a woman yelling. They also say they heard more than one gunshot.

Anthony Germain/CBC
Anthony Germain/CBC

Late Friday afternoon, a person who said she was a friend of a woman who lived in the house told CBC News a man broke into the house through a back window, armed with a knife.

CBC News is not naming the friend to protect the identity of the woman involved in the incident.

The friend said the woman living in the house suspected who it was and told her boyfriend to call 911. According to the friend the boyfriend used a boxspring mattress as a shield to fend off the attack. When police arrived, the friend said, they attempted to deploy a taser which didn't work and after that the shots were fired.

Grand Falls-Windsor Mayor Barry Manuel said the town's heart goes out to everyone involved in the tragic and "quite shocking" event.

"With the investigation ongoing there's not much I can say other than this was a contained incident. We've been in touch with the RCMP, so there's no threat to public safety," Manuel told CBC News.

John Pike/CBC
John Pike/CBC

Manuel, who was born and raised in the quiet community and has lived there for the last 50 years, said Friday's shooting is an anomaly for the town. He said the incident has been the talk of the community, and is encouraging residents not to partake in rumours.

"Just make sure the information you have is accurate and credible. I'm sure the RCMP will do a professional and thorough job along with the SIRT team and more details will follow as this unfolds," he said.

SIRT is conducting an independent investigation, "which is typical for any police involved death," according to the statement. The RCMP nor SIRT will comment on any of the details.

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