One man is in life-threatening condition after he was shot just after midnight Sunday at Edmonton’s Westmount Village Pizza Hut.
Surveillance video from a Pizza Hut to go, viewed by Global News, shows the 55-year-old male employee leaning against the front counter, looking at his phone, when someone opens the front door, lifts a rifle, shoots and walks out.
EMS arrived on scene near 133 Street NW and 114 Avenue and transported the employee to hospital in serious life-threatening conditions.
Police called it a random act of violence.
Residents of the Westmount neighbourhood say they are not surprised by this type of violence.
“That doesn’t surprise me around here ’cause there’s a lot of people … bad activity around here,” said Kim Granger. She said she’s also noticed nearby stores having been broken into “quite a few times.”
It’s mostly fighting in the area, she said, but she’s heard a few gunshots over the years.
“It’s a scary area.”
Aaron Clark, who has lived in the area for seven years, said it’s always been a rough neighbourhood, but he’s noticed it “going downhill” recently, with a visible increase in open-air drug use and not enough police presence.
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“Keep to yourself. Don’t go walking at night by yourself,” he advised. “Not all of them are bad, but you get the odd one.”
He said he was a victim of a crime when he was thrown into a vehicle off the street just two blocks from the Pizza Hut, beat up and robbed.
“Messed me up, took my ID, my wallet, my watch, my cap, my shirt, my shoes,” Clark recalled.
He was able to escape but was unable to work for two months.
“I think, when it comes to these particularly violent crimes, what it comes down to is working with police to make sure they are addressing this,” said Councillor Andrew Knack.
The police commission oversees police function in the city, not city council, he said, so the city needs to find ways to support police and work with them — as well as with other organizations — on bringing in effective programs to help address violence.
“There’s not one solution that you say, ‘If you just do this, you fix it all,’” said Knack. “It’s a culmination of things that you have to work on together.”
— With files from Sarah Komadina, Global News
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