A routine traffic stop turned into a search for eight teenagers, with two young men and a truck still not found.
On Feb. 4 at roughly 8:30 p.m., a Lloydminster RCMP officer attempted to conduct a traffic stop on what police describe as a “suspicious” pickup truck full of people behind a local bar. Instead of stopping, the truck drove off, only to be found shortly afterward abandoned in a ditch on 75 Avenue near 34 Street on the west side of town.
With the help of witnesses, police were able to find and identify the truck’s eight teenage passengers. The suspects then tried to run from police, some breaking into garages to hide and trying to commandeer vehicles to make their escape.
“There were witnesses that saw these individuals leave the vehicle and pointed it out to (police) when they arrived on scene,” RCMP Const. Grant Kirzinger said. “Throughout the night in efforts to locate (the suspects), different people advised us where they saw people, or advised that they had a vehicle stolen.”
Police dogs were dispatched and caught three of the suspects, two of which were hiding in a backyard.
“(While) one of two of them have been located and arrested, other ones are breaking into garages and trying to steal vehicles to get away,” Kirzinger said. “Onion Lake (RCMP) had recovered one of the stolen (vehicles) that was taken while these individuals were trying to escape.”
Lloydminster and Onion Lake RCMP were able to retrieve two stolen vehicles as well as the keys to a side-by-side.
By 9:30 p.m., police arrested six of the suspects, three teenage boys age 13, 14 and 17, and three teenage girls age 13, 14 and 15. The suspects are from Onion Lake, Frog Lake, Mudie Lake and Siksika Nation.
Two of the suspects, 16- and 17-year-old boys from Onion Lake and Frog Lake remain unaccounted for, along with a silver 2002 Dodge Dakota four-door two-wheel pickup truck with clear poly on the rear window.
Warrants for their arrests are being obtained.
Police ask the public to contact their local RCMP if the missing truck or suspects are found.
The eight teenagers are being charged with possession of stolen property over $5,000, resisting arrest and assault with a weapon.