Two Edmonton men are facing drug trafficking charges after a three-month police investigation in Lethbridge led to the seizure of more than $150,000 worth of crack cocaine.
The investigation began in July after ALERT Lethbridge received a tip from the public. On Sept. 27, ALERT Lethbridge’s organized crime team, with the assistance of the Lethbridge Police Service, arrested 19-year-old Abel Gebeyehu, of Edmonton, at a northside convenience store after an alleged drug transaction.
“Upon arrest he had a quantity of cocaine, crack cocaine, money, cellphones and a small amount of marijuana,” said ALERT Lethbridge Staff Sgt. Jason Walper. Police executed a search warrant on a home in the 300 block of 13 Street South, as well as a vehicle.
“We seized again some more crack cocaine, another $5,300 in cash, and some other evidence to support the charges of trafficking,” said Walper.
During the investigation police also conducted two searches of rural locations which culminated in the total seizure of 1.5 kilograms of crack cocaine, packaged for resale on the streets.
A second man, 21-year-old Brandon Ferguson, of Edmonton, turned himself in to police on Tuesday after learning there was a warrant out for his arrest.
Liberal education discussed
What is the importance and role of a liberal education in the 21st century?
On Thursday, Andrew Hakin, vice-president academic and provost at the University of Lethbridge, spoke at the Southern Alberta Council on Public Affairs on the topic as the U of L shifts back to its roots as a liberal arts educator. The title of his presentation was “Building a better society: is liberal education a fundamental pillar?”
Hakin spoke about the roots of the U of L, starting with local residents coming together and demanding a university independent of the University of Alberta.
“I like to think it was because the citizenry had recognized education as something that moves society forward,” he said. “That a university within the city of Lethbridge would, itself, be transformational.”
There are a number of studies which examine the correlation between education and health, wealth and satisfaction, and, according to Hakin, there are direct correlations to be found. “The news is good,” he said.
College not target of post
A concerning social media post reported last Wednesday night was determined by police not to reference Lethbridge College.
Around 9:30 p.m. a number of Lethbridge College students reported a message on Snapchat which stated “LSA students” should not go to school because someone was planning on killing people.
The Lethbridge College Students’ Association is commonly referred to as the LCSA.
Shortly after midnight, Lethbridge College posted on their website and sent an email to students that police were investigating what was a perceived threat to students and employees.
“The safety of our students and employees is of the utmost importance and we do not take an incident like this lightly,” the college stated. They said the school would remain open for regularly scheduled classes.
Just before 6 a.m. on Thursday, the college provided an update. It said police determined that at no time was the college in any danger and there is no threat to the college.
The police investigation subsequently determined the message originated out of province and was referencing a school in another jurisdiction.
Several advance polling options
Ballots have begun to flow as advance voting kicked off in Lethbridge ahead of the Oct. 16 municipal election.
A total of 543 ballots have been cast as of last Wednesday afternoon. Advance voting stations are arranged leading up to election day Oct. 16 in an effort to ensure all eligible voters have an opportunity to vote.
Any eligible voter can vote at an Advance Voting Station, even if the voter will be in the city on election day.
Advance voting will continue on Saturday at city hall; Oct. 11 at Andy’s Place, University of Lethbridge; and Oct. 14 at city hall. Voting takes place from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Additionally, advance voting can take place through the Mobile Voting Station — a specially marked Lethbridge Transit bus.