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Small northern community evacuated because of nearby wildfire PDF Print E-mail
Written by David Smith   
Wednesday, 16 August 2017 14:09

Kinoosao. Photo courtesy of Jerry Clarke.

After a slow start to the fire season, crews from Saskatchewan Environment are being kept busy across the province's north.

One blaze is burning about 15 kilometres from Fond du Lac, but is moving away from the community.

Executive Director of Wildfire Management, Steve Roberts, who is based in Prince Albert, says that fire is expected to produce significant smoke over the next couple of days.

Smoke from the Northwest Territories is also expected to move into the area over the next 48 hours. Another fire being worked on right now is on the east side of Reindeer Lake in the area of Kinoosao. Roberts says that blaze originated in Manitoba and led to an evacuation.

"It's within about three kilometres of Kinoosao, so yesterday they did an evacuation request order for that community," he said.

Crews from Manitoba are managing that fire.

Roberts says air tankers and crews are also working on the Flow fire on the Saskatchewan-Manitoba boundary.

The granite fire is located about 36 kilometres from Pelican Narrows, and the Wilkins fire is about 22 kilometres from Pelican Narrows. Roberts says those fires are expected to produce localized smoke.

The Ministry of Health has been working with those communities to deal with people who may have respiratory issues.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 August 2017 14:56
Sturgeon Lake man receives three year sentence for molesting teen boys PDF Print E-mail
Written by Chelsea Laskowski   
Wednesday, 16 August 2017 13:50

George Sanderson. Photo courtesy Facebook.

Surprise pleas were entered on Tuesday in a James Smith Cree Nation and Sturgeon Lake molestation case.

The offender, 23-year-old George Sanderson, has pleaded guilty to five charges: two of sexual interference, one of making child pornography and two of distributing child pornography. This relates to boys who were between the ages of 13 and 15 when Sanderson first started communicating with them via Snapchat and Facebook, and his offences occurred on both reserves. The identity of all victims are protected by a publication ban.

Sanderson’s offences included one young teen victim who he started a sexual relationship with in early 2015, a 15-year-old victim who Sanderson took explicit images and videos of before July of 2016, and a 14-year-old victim who he kissed and touched sexually on a James Smith school playground in October of 2016.

All images Sanderson sent via Snapchat were sent to other victims, and the images and video of the third were found on Sanderson’s iPad after he told his first victim that "he was dating another person" – the 15-year-old victim – but told the first victim that he "would end the relationship in order to be with" him, according to documents sent to MBC by Crown Prosecutor Shawn Blackman.

The Internet Child Exploitation Unit investigation into Sanderson’s activities started after a complaint came in on Oct. 20, 2016 and he was arrested eight days later. Sanderson was denied bail on Nov. 3, 2016.

The matters were set to go to a preliminary hearing this week in Prince Albert court, but lawyers instead came to court geared with a joint submission.

Blackman says the Prince Albert judge accepted the agreed three-year sentence, which comes with two years of probation and strict orders to stay away from parks and playgrounds for 20 years. Sanderson will also not be allowed to be in a position of trust or authority with anyone under the age of 16.

Plans to go to trial were nixed and an agreement reached due to "a number of factors such as strengths and weaknesses of the Crown case, possible Defences and Charter Applications associated strengths and weaknesses," Blackman wrote in an e-mail.

Because of time served, the remainder of Sanderson’s sentence falls just under two years, and it’s expected he will serve his time at the Prince Albert Correctional Centre.

Sanderson’s lawyer Ron Piche could not be reached for comment in time for publication.


Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 August 2017 13:53
Saskatchewan Indigenous columnist again recognized by Native American Journalists Association PDF Print E-mail
Written by mbcnews   
Wednesday, 16 August 2017 13:40

Doug Cuthand. Photo courtesy of Strong Nations.

Saskatoon Star-Phoenix and Missinipi Broadcasting Corporation weekly columnist Doug Cuthand has received another honour from the Native American Journalists Association.

Cuthand finished as the runner-up in the Print - Best Column category of the 2017 National Native Media Awards. The honour was for Cuthand's column entitled, "Smart, friendly, tough gray jay ideal choice for national bird."

This is not the first time Cuthand has been recognized by NAJA. He has been honoured by the association 10 times since 1993 -- and has twice won the award for Best Column.

His column can be read each Saturday in the Star-Phoenix and heard each Monday on MBC's "The North at Noon".


Last Updated on Wednesday, 16 August 2017 13:44
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