Police officer shot dead in Canadian Arctic community

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

RCMP Constable Douglas Allen Scott.
Image: RCMP.

Constable Douglas Scott, 20, of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) was shot to death late Monday night while answering a call about an impaired driver. The incident took place in the community of Kimmirut in Canada's northern territory of Nunavut.

Constable Scott, who had been on the job for six months, is the second northern Canadian RCMP officer killed on duty in just under a month. On October 6, Constable Christopher Worden was shot and killed while responding to a call in Hay River, in the Northwest Territories.

Scott is survived by his parents, Doug and Marla, as well as his siblings and grandparents. His parents live near Brockville, Ontario.

RCMP Commanding Officer "V" (Nunavut) Division Marty Cheliak expressed the police force's shock and sadness at the shooting. "The death of any of our members is deeply felt, but when once again it occurs in one of our close-knit northern communities, the pain of that loss seems even greater," said Cheliak in a statement. "Our hearts also go out to the community of Kimmirut and to everyone who knew Doug."

Cheliak provided the following timeline of events:

Baffin Island, Nunavut, showing location of Kimmirut.
  • "At 10:56 p.m., Cst. Scott was called to respond to a complaint of a possible impaired driver.
  • At 11:02 p.m. Cst. Scott radioed “V” (Nunavut) Division telecoms to say that he was following up on the call for service.
  • Shortly thereafter, “V” Division telecoms attempted to contact Cst. Scott, but received no response.
  • At 11:31 a second member from the detachment was advised by local residents that [the officer] had responded to a report of an impaired driver and that the driver had crashed into a residence. Upon arrival at the scene, it was found that [Constable Scott] had been shot.
  • At 11:45 p.m. “V” division’s Emergency Response Team was mobilized.
Constable Scott tragically lost his life while protecting the people of his community and will be remembered for his courage, bravery and dedication.

—Prime Minister Stephen Harper

  • At 11:56 p.m. it was confirmed that the suspect had entered his own residence.
  • At 4:10 a.m. the suspect surrendered to police without incident and was taken into custody."

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper issued a statement on the death of Scott on Tuesday. “I wish to pay tribute to Constable Doug Scott, who died tragically in the line of duty in Kimmirut, Nunavut," said Harper. "On behalf of Canadians, I extend my sincere sympathy to the family, friends and fellow colleagues of Constable Scott. We are forever grateful that young men and women like Constable Scott continue to respond to the call of duty often working under extreme circumstances, and in conditions of great danger."

The suspect in the shooting, Pingoatuk (Ping) Kolola of Kimmirut, Nunavut, has since been transported via RCMP aircraft to Iqaluit where he remains in custody. He has been charged with first degree murder.