by Nigel Maxwell for paNOW.com
Rural crime has been a big issue for many municipalities across the province, and the President of the Saskatchewan Association Rural Municipalities (SARM) said he expects more discussion on the topic at this week’s convention in Regina.
“Many of our members are getting really frustrated; we don’t think we have enough RCMP in Saskatchewan, and we want them to be more visible,” SARM president Ray Orb said.
Orb’s comments come on the heels of another shooting incident in the province, involving a property owner in the Spiritwood area.
Four people have now been arrested in connection with Tuesday’s alleged break-and-enter. Police confirmed the property owner did fire a shot in the air but will not be charged. Although no injuries were reported the RCMP urged property owners to avoid confrontation whenever possible.
Despite the frustrations felt in some municipalities, Orb said he was encouraged by the emergence of rural crime watch programs across the province in recent months.
The SARM president also said is happy with the provincial government’s creation of a protective services response team, which includes conservation officers tasked to assist the RCMP.
“Even though members are frustrated, we are hoping they will be somewhat patient and give this response team a chance to work,” Orb said.
Orb said there is also some talk coming from Ottawa about a private member’s member that may be put forward to request the federal government strike a committee to look a rural crime nationally.