Two teachers are among the four people killed and two critically injured after a shooter opened fire at a high school in the northern Saskatchewan community of La Loche.
Late Friday, La Loche Mayor Kevin Janvier confirmed 23-year-old Marie Janvier, who was a teaching assistant at the La Loche Community School’s Dene Building, was killed. Saturday morning the family of Adam Wood sent out a statement confirming the death of the teacher, who just started his teacher career in September.
RCMP confirmed four people died, and not five as the Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said earlier during a news conference in Regina on Friday.
“The situation is no longer active and the suspected shooter has been taken into custody,” Trudeau said, in a national address.
The PM said he has spoken with premier Brad Wall, local MP Georgina Jolibois, and Janvier to express sympathy and support.
“I want to thank the first responders who have acted swiftly and bravely,” he said. “We all grieve with and stand with the community of La Loche and all of Saskatchewan on this terrible and tragic day.”
“Obviously this is every parent’s worst nightmare. When I spoke with community leaders, they obviously expressed that the community is reeling and all of us across this country’s hearts are going out to the families and to the whole community.”
“There are some people that are in critical condition that are being med-evac’d and that the shooter is now in custody,” Chief Teddy Clark of the Clearwater River Dene Nation told News Talk Radio Friday afternoon before the PM’s address.
The chief said he has heard up to 10 people were shot in the community. He said he has personal connections to some of the victims.
La Loche RCMP received the call about an active shooter at the high school at 1 p.m. Officers seized a gun and took a male into custody at 1:47 p.m.
Police investigators are also on scene at a second location in the town. They are asking the public to stay away from the school and the 300 block of Dene Crescent.
As of 6:30 p.m. both schools were still under lockdown as a precaution.
Georgina Jolibois is the Member of Parliament for Desnethe Missinippi Churchill River and the former mayor of La Loche.
“I am shaken and saddened by this shooting at the high school,” she said in a phone interview from La Loche. “The community is shaken up, though, the community is a fairly strong community and will come together to begin healing and supporting each other.”
She said her thoughts and prayers are with the students, staff, families and everyone who is affected, including her own family members who were at the school.
The Health Region in Buffalo Narrows said extra medical staff are being sent to the community.
Premier Brad Wall posted a statement on Facebook early Friday afternoon expressing shock at the horrific events in La Loche and thanking emergency personnel who responded quickly to the shootings.
STARS Air Ambulance was dispatched to the community, about six hours northwest of Prince Albert, around 2 p.m. Friday.
Northern Lights School Division said RCMP asked them not to comment on the situation to media.
News Talk Radio contacted Karen Boucher, a mother who said her two children attend La Loche Community School.
“I got them home, they’re sending all the kids to the arena right now to get picked up. They have a SWAT team and everything. There’s an investigation going on. Everything is blocked off right now,” she said.
Boucher said the shooter was in his late teens.