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Last updateFri, 24 Mar 2023 11am

Drumheller RCMP execute search warrants, arrest suspect

Exhibits 1

Drumheller RCMP executed a search warrant on a residence, resulting in the seizure of several illicit substances and the arrest of one suspect.
On Thursday, February 23, Drumheller General Investigative Section (GIS), assisted by Southern Alberta Crime Reduction Unit (SACRU), Hanna General Duty officers, and Drumheller General Duty officers, concluded a month-long investigation into drug trafficking activities within the Town of Drumheller and Starland County.
At approximately 5 a.m., RCMP members from Drumheller, Hanna, and the Drumheller GIS Unit executed a search warrant at a residence in the Greenwood Villa area of the Town of Drumheller.
A second search warrant was also executed on a vehicle.
As a result of these searches, RCMP seized 64 grams of methamphetamine, 26 grams of crack cocaine, 26 grams of cocaine, 27 grams of fentanyl, 300 unstamped cigarettes, and $800 in Canadian currency.
As a result of the investigation and search warrants, Kelly Miskolczi, 54, a resident of Drumheller, was arrested and charged with two counts possession for the purpose of trafficking (cocaine and methamphetamine); possession of proceeds of crime; possession of cigarettes that are unstamped.
Miskolczi was released on an undertaking and is scheduled to appear in provincial court in Drumheller on Friday, April 14, 2023 to answer to the charges.
Detachment Commander, S/Sgt. Robert HARMS, stated “This investigation and arrest demonstrates the expertise, abilities, and collaboration of the RCMPs specialized units and front-line officers. Our officers remain committed to drug enforcement and to the removal of illicit substances from our communities”.
If you have any information regarding criminal activity in your neighbourhood, including the trafficking of drugs, please contact the Drumheller RCMP at 403.823.7590. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), online at or by using the "P3 Tips" app available through the Apple App or Google Play Store.

PACT team assists with mental health police calls

SSgt Harms

With the number of mental health issues the police are forced to deal with in the line of their everyday work, the RCMP has another tool in its toolbox, to help more effectively deal with situations.
Over the last few years, the RCMP in Alberta has rolled out the Police and Crisis Teams (PACT) to better deal with situations where police need more support on a call.
“There has always been discussion as to whether mental health calls are a police matter or a medical matter. We are talking about someone who is truly in a mental health crisis. I do believe there is a police component to it, but some of the mental health calls we have been on are some of the most dangerous calls that we go on,” said Staff Sergeant Robert Harms. “There is a need for police, but we are not doctors. If someone is in a true medical crisis, they probably need a medical component to help deal with that.”
He explains it is basically a team in a police vehicle with a police officer and mental health nurse or someone who specializes in these kinds of medical crises.
“It is really the best of both worlds, they can attend the calls, and the safety side of things is satisfied because of the police officer, and they will also have a professional there to deal with the medical side of things,” said Harms. “Some of the success I have seen is they are often able to resolve things right on the scene, unlike before when they don’t have that medical piece at the scene, sometimes we have to take that person to the hospital for a medical assessment.”
Mental health calls have been on the rise. Harms said over the last five years in Southern Alberta in towns with populations between 5,000 and 10,000, there has been a 28 per cent increase in calls, over the last five years. Drumheller has seen a 35 per cent increase.
While Drumheller does not have a dedicated PACT team, there are teams currently on shift throughout the province. Drumheller officers are fully trained and can utilize the service of nearby teams, including Cochrane, Coladale and Red Deer. He says in the past, officers have been able to consult with a medical practitioner on the phone when dealing with a call and have had one deployed to the area once.
“That is who we lean on whenever we need it. Right now, they are a little distance from us, but they will mobilize themselves to this area if we need it,” said Harms.
“How far will they be rolled out in Alberta? I don’t know, but it is a really good start and a step in the right direction.”

Drumheller considers regulating short term rentals, Airbnbs

Copy of Copy of Housing Strat

As work continues on the Town of Drumheller Housing Strategy, one facet being considered is to address and regulate the number of short term rentals within the community.
While short term rentals, also called STRs and which include Airbnb units, are beneficial to the tourism sector, they also have impacts on the rental and housing market for local residents; Economic Development manager Reg Johnston brought forward a briefing note for discussion during the Monday, February 13 Committee of the Whole meeting.
“Through research, we know short term rentals impact affordability and take units off the market for the rental side of things, but they are also helpful for tourism,” Mr. Johnston shared during the presentation.
As of October 2022, there were roughly 100 short term rental units within the Town.
Mr. Johnston explained, although there is currently no clear definition of short term rentals, it is generally considered any residence which is rented for less than 28 days, and will be more clearly defined and outlined in the finalized bylaw.
Other municipalities in the surrounding region were also surveyed, and it was found there were no short term rentals in Irricana, 12 in Strathmore, 123 in Airdrie, and over 1,000 in Canmore.
The way municipalities regulate short term rentals was also considered, and a broader scope was reviewed which included some tourist destinations in British Columbia. All other municipalities required licensing and imposed fines and penalties, though there were some variations to other regulations such as taxation and restrictions. Although municipalities in B.C. were included in the research, Mr. Johnston noted regulations in the proposed bylaw would more closely resemble those of the other Alberta municipalities researched.
Among the points of discussion brought up following the presentation were whether these properties should be assessed at a different tax level than residential homes, potential regulations regarding the number of vehicles permitted, and whether these units and properties will be encouraged to be involved with any Destination Marketing Organization (DMO) similar to hotels and campgrounds.
A draft of the proposed bylaw is anticipated to be brought forward at the March 13 Committee of the Whole meeting for further discussion and review.


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