Strathcona County, Alberta – Strathcona County RCMP Drug Unit began a drug trafficking investigation in November 2017. A search warrant was executed on December 15, 2017 at two separate residences located in Sherwood Park and northeast Leduc County. The investigation is now complete.
In the course of this search, RCMP seized a large amount of drugs, drug trafficking paraphernalia as well as a loaded handgun, a loaded shotgun, two Edmonton Police Service (EPS) vests, ammunition, an operational signal jammer. In addition, police seized approximately $442,875 in cash which is the biggest cash bust for the Strathcona County RCMP Drug Unit (see attached sheet for a product list).
The EPS body armour and tactical vest were determined to be stolen from Edmonton on August 3, 2017.
Two children ages 6 and 10 were living at the residence in Leduc County where loaded and accessible firearms were present.
William Steven WHITEFORD, age 34 of Leduc and Kala Julian DIEHL, age 30 of Leduc have been charged with:
- Eight counts of possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking.
- Two counts of careless use of a firearm.
- Two counts of unsafe storage of a firearm.
- One count of trafficking in property obtained by crime over $5000.
- Two counts of unauthorized possession of a firearm.
- Two counts of unauthorized possession of a weapon.
- Two counts of possession of firearm when knowing possession is unauthorized.
- Two counts of possession of weapon when knowing possession is unauthorized.
- Two counts of possession of weapon for dangerous purpose.
- One count of possessions of prohibited or restricted firearm with ammunition.
- Three counts of trafficking in property obtained by crime under $5000.
- One count of unlawfully possess body armour without a valid permit.
WHITEFORD has been charged with 13 additional offences in relation to this matter.
WHITEFORD has been remanded and is scheduled to appear in Sherwood Park Provincial Court on Wednesday February 7, 2018 at 9:30 a.m.
DIEHL has been released on a recognizance and is scheduled to appear in Sherwood Park Provincial Court on Wednesday February 7, 2018 at 9:30 a.m.
Jadon Jason SAXTON, age 25 of Fort Saskatchewan area has been charged with four counts of possession of a controlled substance for the purpose of trafficking. SAXTON was released on a Promise to Appear and is scheduled to appear in Sherwood Park Provincial Court on Wednesday March 7, 2018 at 9:30 a.m.
Strathcona County RCMP Drug Unit acknowledges the extensive investigation and seizure were a collaboration between many police units and police agencies including; Strathcona County RCMP general duty, St. Albert RCMP Drug Unit, ICRU (Integrated Crime Reduction Unit), RCMP Emergency Response Team (ERT), RCMP Police Dog Services and the Alberta Sheriffs Surveillance Team.
"Collaboration and partnerships lead to successful arrests," says Staff Sgt. Andy Kyle of the Strathcona County RCMP General Investigative Section, "Every seizure of drugs and firearms impact crime and play a part in making our communities safer."
A successful ‘wrap-around’ Crime Reduction approach depends on successful partnerships with various provincial and municipal government partners amongst others such as other policing agencies, health and mental health institutions and non-governmental organizations.
If you have any information about this, or any other crime, please call the Strathcona County RCMP at (780) 467-7741, or call your local police detachment. If you want to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or by internet at www.tipsubmit.com or by SMS (check your local Crime Stoppers www.crimestoppers.ab.ca for instructions).