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Last updateMon, 15 Apr 2024 1am

Local Law firm forges ahead with new ownership

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One of Drumheller’s longest-established law firms will continue on with a new name as Mitchell Barry and Michael James have purchased Kloot & Associates.
The full-service law firm, which prides itself on offering cradle-to-grave services, will now be known as Barry & James LLP.
“Part of purchasing the firm was to keep that continuity because, essentially this firm has been here under one name or another since the 1960s. To me, it was important to make sure the firm continued on and is still here in the community,” said James.
Mitchell Barry grew up in Drumheller and graduated from St. Anthony’s School. He received his undergraduate at the University of Saskatchewan and went on to study at the Saskatchewan College of Law. He articled with the offices of Norman L. Tainsh in Three Hills and was admitted to the Law Society of Alberta in July 2020.
Barry then transitioned into taking ownership of Norman Tainsh Professional Corporation, forming Barry & Company in 2023.
Michael James came to Drumheller about 14 years ago after completing his Bachelor of Science in Palaeontology and his Masters of Science in 2010 from the University of Alberta. He returned to Alma Mata in 2016 to study law and earned his Juris Doctor in 2019. He then articled at Herman Kloot and Company with Colin Kloot as his principal. He was admitted to the bar in 2020.
Barry explains the two became friends while articling, and when the opportunity came up, they committed.
“With me having my own firm, it just made sense to branch out and put the two together, and I think part of it was to come back and be a bit closer to home. I know a lot of people here, and it is just nice to reconnect,” said Barry. “The same with Michael being able to help clients out in my area. I have a lot of people who come in and want family law advice or criminal law advice, and we just don’t normally don’t provide that.”
Barry will continue on in Three Hills, along with Tainsh, who is continuing his practice. James will contine in Drumheller.
Kloot will remain with the office for the foreseeable future as he wraps up his practice. He will also continue as principal for Jaco (Jack) la Grange, who is articling.
Kloot has been with the firm for 25 years and will begin wrapping up his practice.
“It is something that I am very proud of, what the community has allowed me to achieve, and the community has been so wonderful to this firm and to us. And we certainly try to make reciprocal and mutual.”
Kloot is confident in the new ownership and believes it is in good hands.
“I am excited for the future of this firm I believe we have a bright young team with good support staff in both of the offices, here and Thee Hills,” said Kloot. “I am here to provide continuity to our clients and to support and hopefully provide some guidance and mentoring to the young lawyers.”


Drumheller RCMP lay charges following year long trafficking investigation

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In January of 2023, Drumheller RCMP initiated an investigation into drug trafficking following the discovery of multiple packages believed to be dropped utilizing a drone at the Drumheller Institution. During the investigation, multiple partners and RCMP Support Units were engaged, including from the Drumheller Institution, RCMP Southern Alberta Crime Reduction Unit, Drumheller General Investigation Unit (GIS), Strathmore GIS, Calgary Police Service, Edmonton Police Service, RCMP Forensic Identification Section (FIS), RCMP Special Investigations, and more.

On Dec. 1, 2023, police executed two search warrants at one residence in Calgary and one residence in Red Deer, Alta.

As a result of the search warrant, the following was seized:

A drone
Cell phones
Drug paraphernalia
A quantity of methamphetamine, GHB, Psilocybin, and MDMA

As a result of this operation, Drumheller RCMP laid a total of 5 charges. Jessica Lavallee (35), a resident of Red Deer, has been charged with:

Possession of Methamphetamine for the Purpose of Trafficking
Possession of MDMA for the Purpose of Trafficking
· Possession of GHB for the Purpose of Trafficking
Possession of Psilocybin for the Purpose of Trafficking
· Possession of Proceeds of Crime

Jessica Lavallee was released on an undertaking and is set to appear in Alberta Court of Justice in Drumheller on May 17, 2024.

Drumheller RCMP and partners continue to investigate this matter and additional charges are pending.

If you have any information regarding these matters, please contact Drumheller RCMP at 403.823.7590 or contact your local Police Service. If you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), online at www.P3Tips.com or by using the "P3 Tips" app available through the Apple App or Google Play Store.

Drumheller Flying Club resurrected

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The Drumheller Flying Club met on Wednesday, 13 March to resurrect the club. In total, they had a list of 24 interested members and 16 members in attendance last week.
The organizers stress that you don’t need to be a pilot to be a member of the flying club. You just need to have an interest in aviation.
The plan is to meet quarterly and to work on various projects at the airport and focus on aviation education and advocacy. The cost to join is $100 per year.
The plan for 2024 is for the Club to hold a pancake breakfast up at the Airport, for pilots and locals, and to create a sortie,an opportunity for pilots and passengers to fly together in loose formation with a similar destination in mind. The club has also engaged a regional flying school to encourage them to have a sub-base in Drumheller.
There will be some social opportunities available for pilots and aviation enthusiasts to get together throughout the year, go for introductory flights and help around the airport.
Drumheller has an amazing airport, with a newly paved $1.5 million runway with the addition of new runway lighting.
Drumheller‘s airport terminal is in great shape, and the group will seek to find grant opportunities for exterior siding and upgraded windows in future years.
Interim Club President Pat Bonneville said “it was encouraging to see the turn out on by just having a couple of interested parties spreading the word that we were going to get together. The club's goals are to assist members in achieving their personal aviation goals while giving back to the community."
For more information, to become a member of the flying club or information on how you get your pilot license, you can email FlyDrumheller@gmail.com, phone Pat Bonneville at 403-820-4349 or Bob Sheddy at 403-324-2222.


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