The casket of slain RCMP Const. David Wynn is carried into a funeral in St. Albert on Jan. 26, 2015. Wynn died four days after he and auxiliary Const. Derek Bond were shot by Shawn Rehn in St. Albert on Jan. 17, 2019.
Jason Franson / The Canadian Press, file
An Edmonton police officer who played a key role in setting bail and releasing a man who killed a St. Albert Mountie in 2015 told a fatality inquiry Thursday he believed he did the right thing at the time.Shawn Rehn, a man with an extensive criminal record, fatally shot Const. David Wynn at the then-Apex Casino in St. Albert on Jan. 17, 2015, as the officer was responding to calls of a stolen vehicle. Rehn then fled from the casino and was found dead by suicide in a rural home at the end of a police standoff. Auxiliary Const. Derek Bond suffered a gunshot wound and was later released from hospital.Edmonton police Const. Wilson Quan spoke Thursday at the inquiry into Wynn and Rehn’s deaths. He told the judge he did the right thing at the time by accepting a joint submission setting Rehn’s bail at $4,500 with conditions the 34-year-old man promise to appear in court.Rehn subsequently posted the bail and failed to attend any ensuing court appearances.“It’s almost like a family member has died,” said Quan outside the St. Albert courtroom. “However, what I did on that specific case is what I do all the time. I take an assessment risk, is exactly what has happened and I do my best. I need to come up with the best decision to protect the community.”The fatality inquiry was conducted this week to investigate the circumstances surrounding the deaths and determine if anything can be done to prevent similar deaths in the future.Rehn was arrested when he was found in possession of a stolen motorcycle and attempted to avoid arrest in January 2015. Quan said $4,500 was higher than normal for those charges and Rehn would still have a difficult time coming up with the money.At the time, more than 90 per cent of suspects were granted bail. Those that spoke at this week’s inquiry agreed Quan made an informed decision and could not have done anything more to deny bail.Quan originally asked for a bail of $10,000, an amount he believed would detain Rehn until he appeared in court.A review of Alberta’s bail system was conducted in the wake of Wynn’s death. Crown prosecutors now reside over initial bail hearings in place of police officers.Shelly Macinnis-Wynn, Wynn’s widow, told Quan she didn’t blame him for the shooting and wished he had never been forced into that position as she pleaded for improvements to officer safety during the inquiry’s final submissions.“I can’t change what happened and I can’t bring back my husband,” MacInnis-Wynn said at the inquiry as she fought back tears. “But we can change how we protect our officers.”It took 10 seconds from the time Wynn identified Rehn to the time he had been shot, 10 seconds that changed MacInnis-Wynn and her family’s lives forever.Retired RCMP officer John Bennett told the court a report he conducted following the altercation found the Apex Casino, now Century Casino, is a dead zone where radio communications don’t work. Wynn was unable to communicate with officers while inside.“This is something that’s needed to be changed,” said MacInnis-Wynn outside the courthouse.Bennett’s report said the quick encounter between Wynn and Rehn meant the radio problems played a minor role in the shooting. Still, the St. Albert RCMP detachment has since added cellphones to every police vehicle for officers to use in known dead zones. Officers are now required to call for backup when responding to calls in those spots.RCMP detachments in Alberta are currently switching to a radio system that will improve communications.The inquiry concluded with Judge Bruce Garriock set to review all evidence and file any recommendations he has.MacInnis-Wynn said she has learned more about Rehn and his past, saying he was a product of his environment who had gone down the wrong road as a child. She is planning to create a foundation in her husband’s name to help at-risk youth.“The one thing we are targeting is entering the school system and trying to break that cycle. Identifying those children who do need help and don’t have the support at home and giving them the support they need,” said MacInnis-Wynn.firstname.lastname@example.org