Pubdate: Thu, 15 May 2003
Source: Rocky View Times (CN AB)
Copyright: 2003 Rocky View Times.
Author: Kristen Enevold


Rocky View Times--Chestermere residents are vowing to continue efforts in
stopping the local drug trade -- and the initiative is working, say

"We won't stand for this sort of thing. The message we want to send is that
if you are involved (in the drug trade) pack your bags -- we want you to go
somewhere else," said Allan Maillot, a Chestermere town councillor and
member of the public services committee.

That message was reinforced last week when over 100 people attended an open
house and discussion forum outlining what the RCMP has done to combat a
number of grow operations in the area. Since January, police have
intercepted more than $6 million and the accompanying marijuana from 16
Chestermere homes.

Strathmore RCMP Staff Sergeant Glen De Goeij couldn't be reached for comment
on how successful police have been in combating drug-related activity, and
what role Chestermere residents have played in the subsequent arrests.

Maillot said tips from neighbours have been an important factor in police

"The residents have been great. They're fed up with all this," he said,
explaining the town has received some unwanted notoriety. "We've been the
butt of some jokes, but people can say what they want because the fact is
the word is getting out there and these people are getting caught," Maillot
said, encouraging residents to continue to keep an eye out in their

"The best thing to do is to get to know your neighbour," he said, adding a
mailout sent to all residents a few months ago contained information on what
to look for.

He said the town will see even more of a police presence as it continues to
grow. A third RCMP officer will arrive in Chestermere this summer, and the
town is considering hiring a fourth.

Once Chestermere's population gets to 5,000 a free-standing RCMP detachment
will be created. The present population is 3,700.