November was a great month for the Saskatoon Police Service as two members were recognized as recipients of two very prestigious awards. They were recognized for their skills, but it was how they used those skills in a specific incident that earned them the top honours.
On August 12, 2014, just before 4:00 a.m., Special Constable Kim Fabe answered a call from a very agitated male. She learned that he was in his basement with a gun and threatened to shoot both himself and any police officers if they came to his house. While officers were dispatched, S/Cst Fabe kept the man talking which prevented him from hanging up on her. She was calm, composed and very patient which enabled her to develop rapport with the man, even in his distressed state. Using her skills and ingenuity, she was able to gather critical information to relay to responding officers, such as the man was in possession of a rifle and had approximately 30 rounds of ammunition, and that while he was in the basement, there was someone upstairs, and there was only one way in and out. Despite hearing him cock his gun and discharge it several times, S/Cst Fabe maintained her composure so much so that the Crisis Negotiator responding felt confident leaving her as the phone contact until he was able to set up at the scene to make contact. The conversation with the suspect only ended when his cell phone died.
Cst. Ryan Beerling was the Crisis Negotiator that was called to the scene that August morning. He spent 13 hours negotiating a peaceful resolution with the suspect. During that time, the suspect fired multiple shots at officers, and as the situation appeared to be worsening, Cst. Beerling’s continued efforts led to the suspects eventual surrender.
Due to the skills of both S/Cst Fabe and Cst Beerling, nobody was injured during this incident that spanned the better part of a day. The suspect was taken into custody and given the help that he needed.
For their work, S/Cst Fabe received the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) Canada Telecommunicator of the Year Award, and Cst. Beerling received the 2015 National Tactical Officers Association (of the United States) Crisis Negotiators Award. Cst. Beerling was also nominated for his work on another active shooter incident.
Thank you, S/Cst Fabe and Cst Beerling, for your continued efforts to doing the best job, and congratulations on your achievements!