Red Deer RCMP, Lake Louise RCMP and Calgary Police Service have charged five people with 30 charges after a multi-agency drug trafficking investigation resulted in the seizure of large amounts of cocaine and methamphetamine in three different jurisdictions.
The Red Deer RCMP trafficking investigation began in December 2017 when police followed up on an anonymous tip regarding cocaine trafficking in Red Deer; RCMP were supported throughout the investigation by Correctional Service of Canada with regard to a trafficking suspect who was currently on parole.
The investigation soon expanded further into a multi-agency operation involving Lake Louise RCMP and Calgary Police Service.
On April 28th, Lake Louise RCMP conducted a traffic stop on a suspicious truck and determined that the driver was breaching his parole by being in Lake Louise without permission from his parole officer.
RCMP arrested the male driver, and the two female passengers were released pending further investigation.
The arrest for parole violation led to a drug investigation, and an auto theft officer out of the RCMP Serious Crimes south unit further determined that the impounded truck had a fake VIN and had been reported stolen out of Fort McLeod.
Lake Louise police officers seized significant amounts of cocaine, methamphetamine and Ecstasy, smaller amounts of other drugs and items consistent with drug trafficking, and connected into the longer-term trafficking investigation by Red Deer RCMP.
The detachments collaborated to share information in support of further charges against the suspect and the future arrests of other identified drug trafficking targets.
Red Deer RCMP also connected with Calgary Police Service regarding suspected drug movement between Red Deer and Calgary.
On July 17th, members of the Red Deer RCMP drug unit conducted a search warrant on a residence in the Highland Green neighbourhood in Red Deer and seized significant amounts of cocaine, methamphetamine and cash seized as the proceeds of crime.
In the final segment of this in-depth investigation, the Calgary Police Service also laid charges on July 27th against one of the female passengers in the stolen truck during the Lake Louise arrest; she is believed to be connected to the drug trade in both Calgary and Red Deer along with her male companion.
She is now wanted on warrants and Calgary Police Service investigators are working to locate her.
“This investigation followed a network of drug trafficking activity between Calgary, Red Deer and the corridor to Lake Louise, with the same players believed to be travelling back and forth between these locations replenishing their drug supplies and trafficking those drugs throughout central Alberta,” says Sgt. Robert Schultz of the Red Deer RCMP GIS unit.
“This multi-agency collaboration shows the effectiveness of shared intelligence between police agencies. We’re all working toward the same goals of crime reduction, and we see many of the same repeat offenders crossing jurisdictions, so it’s imperative that we work smarter than the criminals.”
Arrested and charged by Lake Louise RCMP is 43-year-old William Laurin Bowden who is charged with three counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking a controlled substance, one count of possession of stolen property over $5,000 and one Traffic Safety Act charge.
At the time of his arrest, Bowden’s parole was revoked and he was remanded to appear in court in Canmore on Sept. 19th. Formerly of Winnipeg, Bowden lived in Red Deer for several months and currently resides in Calgary.
Arrested and charged by Red Deer RCMP is 29-year-old Rico Small of Red Deer who is charged with three counts of trafficking, two counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking and one count of possession of the proceeds of crime.
Kareem Lumea Cummings, 25, of Red Deer is charged with two counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking, one count of possession of the proceeds of crime, two counts of failure to comply with court-imposed conditions and one count of failure to comply with probation.
Jeremy Blackman, 31, of Red Deer is charged with two counts of possession for the purpose of trafficking. All three appeared in court in Red Deer on Aug. 23rd and are scheduled to appear again on Sept. 20th.
Wanted by Calgary Police Service (CPS) is Brandy Ross, 32, of Calgary who is charged with eight counts of trafficking a controlled substance and six counts of possession of proceeds of crime under $5,000.
Ross is wanted on warrants in connection with these 14 charges and CPS investigators are still working to locate her. Ross is described as 5’3” tall, thin build, long, bright red hair and green eyes.
Anyone with information on Ross’s whereabouts is asked to call the Calgary Police Service non-emergency line at 403-266-1234. Tips can also be left anonymously by contacting Crime Stoppers by phone at 1-800-222-8477 or online at www.calgarycrimestoppers.org (Case #18037310/5168).
“Drug trafficking has severe impacts on all our communities in terms of increased violence and property crime as well as the many social harms,” said Schultz. “We’re pleased to have put another significant dent in drug trafficking operations across Central Alberta thanks to this excellent collaboration with our law enforcement partners.”