No 'terrorism' charges for now in Edmonton attack

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Charges are anticipated "in the very near future" against a Somali national accused of running down and stabbing a police officer and then injuring four pedestrians in a high-speed chase through the streets of Alberta province's capital, Royal Canadian Mounted Police assistant commissioner Marlin Degrand said at a press conference on Sunday afternoon.

He is facing a number of charges, including five counts of attempted murder, unsafe driving and participation in a terrorist activity.

Canada's CTV News said the officer was expected to recover, though further details on the condition of the victims was not immediately available.

A Somali-born refugee has been charged with five counts of attempted murder in connection with a weekend attack in Edmonton, Alberta.

Sharif has been remanded into custody and is scheduled for a bail hearing in provincial court on Tuesday morning.

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Edmonton Police Chief Rod Knecht said the suspect is a 30-year-old man from the city and appears to have acted alone.

At approximately 8:15 p.m. Saturday (0215 GMT Sunday) a man in a speeding white Chevy Malibu crashed through police barricades outside Edmonton's Commonwealth Stadium, where a Canadian Football League game was being played.

The suspect fled the scene and deliberately hit pedestrians as police pursued him, sending at least four people to the hospital with injuries, authorities said.

"He was in a struggle for his life, holding onto his gun with one hand and blocking the knife with his other", Knecht said Sunday.

Police arrested the suspect after the vehicle flipped over during the pursuit.

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Knecht said when the U-haul pulled over for the checkpoint, the driver produced identification linking him to the registered owner of the Malibu. This raised doubts in the mind of the police and the driver sensed trouble. Four pedestrians were hospitalized after being intentionally struck, one of whom has a fractured skull.

Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said it would be wrong to blame the attack on any alleged shortcomings or failures in Canada's immigration and refugee vetting system.

"It is believed at this time that these two incidents are related, " Knecht said.

Investigators determined at that time that he did not pose a threat.

Degrand said files on the suspect were kept and shared with other intelligence and police agencies after 2015, but said that was as much as the law would allow.

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"If we hadn't pursued this vehicle in light of the use of the auto earlier to run over a police officer and the history of large vehicle attacks in Germany, Spain, and other European countries, the outcome would've been much worse", EPS Insp.


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