Archive for November, 2018

Teen dies in hospital after head-on collision in northeast Calgary

Monday, November 26th, 2018

Calgary police said a 17-year-old has passed away Friday after injuries suffered in a head-on collision that sent four others to hospital Thursday night.

Emergency crews were called to the area of 16 Avenue and 19 Street N.E. shortly after 8:30 p.m.

Police said a speeding vehicle lost control and struck another vehicle, sending debris flying across the road.

Three males, all believed to be in their late teens or early 20s, were taken to Foothills Medical Centre with critical, life-threatening injuries Thursday night, according to Alberta Health Services. Paramedics said all three men were thrown from the vehicle they were in.

Two people from the other vehicle – a man and woman, both believed to be in their 20s or 30s – were taken to Rockyview General Hospital with minor injuries.

Acting Staff Sgt. Travis Juska said police have seen a variety of collisions at the intersection.

He called the crash a “stark reminder that people need to slow down when they’re driving.”

Police respond to a two-vehicle collision in the area of 16 Avenue and 19 Street N.E. on Thursday, Nov. 17, 2016.

Global News

With a file from Global’s Kim Smith

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Drug addict sheds tears for his despicable crime against elderly woman

Monday, November 26th, 2018

It was a vicious home-invasion style robbery that left an elderly West Kelowna woman injured and highly traumatized.

On Thursday, a chronic drug addict was in a court room for a sentencing hearing after earlier pleading guilty to break-and-enter with intent to commit an indictable offense while wearing a mask.

In the middle of the night on October 25 2015, Benjamin Duane Barnhart pried open the kitchen window of an 85-year-old woman.

There was a struggle in her bedroom with Barnhart trying to gag his victim with a scarf.

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He demanded money, jewellery and prescription medications.

When Barnhart was distracted, the woman fled to a neighbour’s home while Barnhart fled with about $200 and the victim’s bank cards.

A few hours later, the cards were used for purchases at several stores and to withdraw $800 from a bank machine.

Security camera pictures helped police track down Barnhart, who was well known to them, at his nearby residence.

Saying the victim’s safety was violently violated in the security of her own home and she was profoundly impacted, the prosecutor is asking for a prison sentence of six to seven years.

Barnhart’s legal aid lawyer is seeking a term of three and a half years, saying Barnhart’s long-time drug addiction fueled his crimes while claiming he’s a strong prospect for rehabilitation.

At times crying in court, the 25-year-old apologized to the victim and her family, saying: “Everyday I think about it and I truly don’t have the words to describe how sorry I am. I never planned to do such a thing and I’m disgusted. Just want to say sorry.”

The judge is expected to hand down his sentencing decision in early December.

Canadian soldier found dead in military gym in Jordan

Monday, November 26th, 2018

OTTAWA – A Canadian soldier who was looking at ways to train the Jordanian military as part of Canada’s fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has died, the Department of National Defence said Thursday.

Maj. Scott Foote, 50, of Carbonear, N.L., was found unconscious in a military gym in Jordan’s capital city of Amman, officials said. Foote was pronounced dead after attempts to revive him were unsuccessful.

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His death has been labelled non-combat related. National Defence has launched an investigation, but officials said there were no indications of foul play.

READ MORE: Governor General David Johnston tours refugee camp in Jordan

A veteran of Afghanistan, Foote arrived in Jordan at the beginning of September as part of a small team tasked with examining ways in which the Canadian Forces could train Jordanian counterparts.

“This mission is not a combat mission,” said Maj.-Gen. Omer Lavoie, commander of 1 Canadian Division in Kingston, Ont., where Foote was most recently serving as a logistics officer.

“It’s a mission where we’re there to enhance the capabilities of the Jordanian Armed Forces in areas such as resources, planning, organization and equipment.”

A similar team is currently working in Lebanon. Lavoie said both missions fall under the umbrella of Canada’s broader effort to fight ISIL.

Foote was to return to Canada just before Christmas, Lavoie said. He leaves behind a wife and son.

“Maj. Foote was a good Newfoundlander and always maintained his eastern roots,” Lavoie said.

“Scott was level-headed, jovial and a good mentor for his peers. He was an outstanding officer and a great member of my team here at 1st Canadian Division.”

Peachland residents warned of mail thefts

Monday, November 26th, 2018

Residents in Peachland are being told to regularly pick up their mail from community mailboxes.  The warning comes as police investigate at least a dozen reports of stolen mail.

“Residents are encouraged to immediately report to police if they observe suspicious activity or unknown persons around those mailboxes,”  says Cpl. Jesse O’Donaghey.

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The thefts being investigated happened between October 28 and November 15.  Police say in most cases the mailboxes were discovered damaged and empty.  Canada Post is also investigating saying affected customers have been notified.

On one occasion a Canada Post employee reported that they discovered nearly 50 pieces of mail abandoned near the intersection of Coldham Road and Desert Pines Avenue. The mail was reportedly seized by the employee, to be sorted and properly delivered to the intended destinations.

The following are some of the areas which have been reportedly targeted by the unknown suspect or suspects:
• 4400 block of Trepanier Road;
• 5300 block of Princeton Avenue;
• 5600 block of Gladstone Road;
• 5900 block of Victoria Street;
• 6000 block of Ellison Avenue;
• 6100 block of Wilson Road;
• 6200 block of Winton Crescent;
• 6300 block of Thompson Drive;
• 7100 block of Brent Road;Security at 1-866-607-6301.  You can also remain anonymous by contacting Crime Stoppers online

Anyone with any information is asked to contact the West Kelowna RCMP at 250-768-2880 or Canada Post Postal Security at 1-866-607-6301.  You can also remain anonymous by contacting Crime Stoppers online or by calling at 1-800-222-8477.

N.B. government drops controversial bilingual school bus court case

Monday, November 26th, 2018

The New Brunswick government is stepping away from its court cases concerning separate school bus systems for English and French students in the province.

A new policy released Wednesday says the responsibility will now be on the individual school districts, apparently closing the book on reviewing the controversial bilingual bus issue.

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READ MORE: Constitutional case over bilingual school busing in New Brunswick gets underway

The provincial government has withdrawn its request to the Court of Appeal to determine whether there is a constitutional obligation to provide separate school buses for English and French schools.

The province says the school districts will now be in charge of the transportation of their pupils as part of a Policy 514 within the education act.

Policy 514 will outline how district education councils can operate, including sharing services with other districts, or engaging private sector transportation providers in the process.

It will also repeal the regulatory requirement for districts to seek government approval before entering into transportation contracts with third parties.

READ MORE: New Brunswick French immersion returning to Grade one

Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Brian Kenny said in a release that what government is implementing will clarify that pupil transportation rests in the hands of education councils, which are elected by the public, including parents.

Kenny also noted in the release that government previously hoped to get clarity on the bilingual bus issue, but says it’s clear the court of appeals is hesitant to rule on the reference question they posed.

Supermoon sends big wave to Moncton tidal bore surfers

Monday, November 26th, 2018

Despite an overcast and dreary day, surfers hoping to catch a big wave at Moncton’s tidal bore got what they wanted Wednesday, thanks to this week’s supermoon.

Nearly waist-high, the wave came in at 10:40 a.m. with hundreds of onlookers lining the shore.

This natural phenomenon happens when the rising tides of the Bay of Fundy are funneled into the narrow Petitcodiac River, creating a tidal wave.

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READ MORE: It makes a nice photo, but is the ‘supermoon’ really that special?

The tidal bore comes into the Petitcodiac Causeway twice a day and travels at about 13 km/h.

Costa Rica-born Melvin Perez rode the wave Wednesday, and even though it wasn’t his first time, this one was special.

“Here you only have one try —; the power is insane because its all the water from the tide coming in, so that’s a big, big, big difference,” Perez said.

The unusually high tide was caused by the supermoon —; the moon was at its perigee, the point where it’s closest to earth, Sunday night and into Monday morning. The last time the moon was this close was in 1948, and it wont be this close again until December 2034.

READ MORE: Filmmaker captures ‘drastically different’ surfing experience near Saint John

“We already have the biggest tides on earth here in the Bay of Fundy, there’s going to be tides at Hopewell Rocks today of 48 feet, Burntcoat Head which is literally where the highest tides on earth are, its pushing 52 feet, it’s huge,” said James Upham, Resurgo Place program director.

WATCH: ‘Super-duper’ moon to rise on Nov. 14

The effects of the supermoon on the tides should last for another day or two.

Marijuana can combat drug and alcohol addiction: UBCO study

Monday, November 26th, 2018

It’s a relatively unorthodox use of medical marijuana, but according to UBC Okanagan researchers, pot could be used to combat substance abuse.

“Research suggests that people may be using cannabis as an exit drug to reduce the use of substances that are potentially more harmful, such as opioid pain medication,” the study’s lead investigator, associate psychology professor Zach Walsh said.

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Walsh and his team, in conjunction with researchers from Florida State University, also found marijuana has the potential to help treat depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Researchers conducted in-depth reviews of numerous studies on marijuana and mental health to come to their findings.

UBC Okanagan touts this as one of the ‘most comprehensive reports to date’ on the effects of medical marijuana on mental health.

With Canada coming closer to legalizing marijuana, Walsh believes his team’s research can help push boundaries and better understand the benefits of cannabis.

READ MORE: How will legal pot be sold? Three things that might happen, and one that won’t

“There is not currently a lot of clear guidance on how mental health professionals can best work with people who are using cannabis for medical purposes,” Walsh said. “With the end of prohibition, telling people to simply stop using may no longer be as feasible an option. Knowing how to consider cannabis in the treatment equation will become a necessity.”

READ MORE: Canada will see 900,000 new pot smokers under legalization, poll implies

The study was recently published int he Clinical Psychology Review. You can view the entire report here.

Arrests made during large police response in northeast Calgary

Friday, November 23rd, 2018

Police set up a mobile command centre in the northeast community of Taradale late Friday night, as well as an armoured vehicle and a tactical unit. Empty buses were also on scene but police could not comment on why.

After a lengthy standoff with police, three men were arrested and are considered persons of interest in relation to a suspicious death. 

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READ MORE: Calgary police arrest ‘persons of interest’ in connection with suspicious death

Police said they were waiting to execute a search warrant on the property.

On Saturday morning, two police vehicles remained at the condominium complex on Taralake Way N.E.

A man named Charles, who did not want to provide his full name, said he was surprised when police officers came to his second floor condo unit Friday evening at around 9:30 p.m.

“We had police knock on our doors and escort us out to buses and that was all we found out,” Charles said. “All they told us was that there was a dangerous situation on the floor above us. I was a little peeved at the time. I have a six-month-old kid so it’s hard to move him out when he’s passed out. And then sitting on a bus, not much better. But it’s better than being in a dangerous situation I guess.”

Residents say they were allowed back in at around 11 p.m.

Other people who live at the complex said they are waiting for some answers about the big police presence in their neighbourhood.

“There were two city buses and about six cops here last night,” Travis Wilfer said. “I got home from work and I have no idea what happened.”

-With files from Carolyn Kury de Castillo

If your toddler isn’t talking, don’t wait to get support: Edmonton speech language pathologist

Friday, November 23rd, 2018

“Bye, bye Kim. See you Monday.”

My husband’s jaw dropped as the words came out of our 21-month-old’s mouth. We knew we had a “talker,” but were increasingly surprised by some of the word combinations he was forming at an early age.

We have friends on both sides of the spectrum. A girlfriend recently heard her two-year-old daughter proclaim, “I am going to put the water bottle in the stroller.”

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Numerous other friends have toddlers on the other side of the spectrum. Some say just a few words while others continue to point rather than verbalize what they are asking for.

For Alberta mother of two Karlee Conway time and extra attention was enough to get her son Nixon talking. But that doesn’t happen for a lot of kids.

“We’re making a lot of difference in their lives by doing some intervention early on,” Edmonton speech language pathologist Karyn Forst says.

She encourages parents who have concerns to get support early. She would prefer to see a child with potential speech issues at 18 months old and discharge them rather than meeting them for the first time at three years old.

“There are parent workshops that they’ll be invited to and also different kinds of assessments that we can do and we can also get parents linked up with many services within the community.”

According to Health Link BC, you should contact your doctor if your child is not saying words by 18 months, or says fewer than 50 words by 24 months.

For access to speech and language services, click on the links below:

Edmonton-area support

Calgary-area support 

To access Vancouver resources 

The Talk Box: A parent’s guide for creating language-rich environments

1 injured in accident at Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa

Friday, November 23rd, 2018

A woman was taken out of the crowd in a wheelchair during Friday’s Remembrance Day ceremony in Ottawa after being struck by a piece of falling plywood.

The large, flat piece of wood fell several stories from scaffolding set up on the side of the Canada Post building on Sparks Street, just as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau, were arriving at the National War Memorial.

Winds were gusting at between 32 and 43 kilometres per hour at the time of the accident.

There were audible gasps as the plywood, which was several feet in both length and width, tumbled onto the crowd. The ceremony continued uninterrupted, however.

The female victim was seen lying on the ground being helped by paramedics before she was taken away for further treatment. The extent of her injuries was unclear, but she was conscious and visibly shaken as she was wheeled out of the tightly-packed crowd.

Thousands of people gathered at the War Memorial, which recently underwent extensive renovations, on Friday to pay tribute to Canada’s fallen soldiers and veterans.

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