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Feces and garbage: Residents of west-central Alberta worried about bush parties

Last Updated Jul 29, 2020 at 11:27 am MDT

FILE - The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police "E" Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on Friday April 13, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

SUNDRE – RCMP say bush parties on Crown land in west-central Alberta have people who live in the rural area worried about their property and their quality of life.

Mounties estimate about 500 people gathered on the weekend near Garrington Bridge along the Red Deer River.

Police said officers responded to 11 complaints about damaged property, stolen property, uttering threats, fireworks and to one report of possession of a weapon dangerous to public peace.

One RCMP vehicle had a window smashed and Alberta Fish and Wildlife officers were called in when a dead deer was found near the party.

Mounties said the crowd left human feces, toilet paper, garbage, empty alcohol containers, stolen traffic signs, and COVID-19 social-distancing signs that appear to have been taken from nearby Innisfail.

“I’m not a health care professional, however, responding and observing that as a concerned person that lives in the community, I find that disturbing,” said RCMP Sgt. Lori Elier.

“The guidelines are put out by our health professionals for a reason and clearly, in this case, they were not adhered to.”

Sgt. Eiler said Mounties have conducted numerous checkstops to prevent impaired driving and will continue enforcement efforts to maintain safety in the area.