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One charged, two more wanted after traffic stop finds prohibited weapons and explosive substances

Police continue search for two suspects

LAC LA BICHE – Alberta RCMP’s Explosive Disposal Unit arrived to Lac La Biche Hamlet Sunday evening, following a traffic stop where police discovered firearms, open containers of liquor and what appeared to be a pipe bomb. 

In the event that occurred shortly after 7 p.m., nearby residents in the area of 100 Street from 103 Street to 94 Avenue, were advised to shelter in place while emergency services assessed and mitigated the situation. This warning was removed early Monday morning.  

The driver of the vehicle, 34-year-old Janet Melissa Richards of Conklin, Alta., was stopped near 99 Avenue along 103 Street in Lac La Biche after committing a traffic related offence.  

During the traffic stop, police located firearms in the vehicle and the driver was subsequently arrested. A further search of the vehicle revealed what appeared to be an explosive device.  

Richards is facing several charges including failing to obey a traffic control device, driving while unauthorized, transporting liquor in an open container, possession of explosive substance without a lawful excuse, possession of weapons for a dangerous purpose, unauthorized possession of firearms and unauthorized possession in motor vehicle. 

Additionally, Lac La Biche RCMP are requesting the public’s assistance in locating Calvin Stanley Ballantyne of Conklin Alta., and Suzie Amanda Cardinal of Lac La Biche who left from the scene prior to grounds for arrest. Warrants for arrest have been issued for the two passengers. 

RCMP are asking members of the public to not approach the two individuals and instead report their whereabouts to RCMP or Crime Stoppers. 

Ballantyne, 39, is described as having black hair, brown eyes and weighs 180lbs. He is 5ft 6inches and has identifying tattoos of letters on his neck, a feline on chest and dragon on his left arm. Ballantyne is known to frequent both Lac La Biche and Conklin. 

Cardinal, 40, is described as having brown hair, brown eyes and weighs 120lbs. She is 5ft 3inches. Cardinal is also known to frequent Lac La Biche and Conklin. 

Richards, the driver of the vehicle, was held for an in-custody hearing and has since been released on conditions. She is scheduled to appear in court on Aug. 30 at 10 a.m., in Lac La Biche. 

The Lac La Biche RCMP’s investigation is ongoing and they are asking the public to provide any information relevant about this or any other crime in the community. Residents can contact Lac La Biche RCMP at 780-623-4012 or their local police.  

If you wish to remain anonymous, you can contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), online at or by using the “P3 Tips” app available through the Apple App or Google Play Store. 

Jazmin Tremblay

About the Author: Jazmin Tremblay

Jazmin completed a minor in journalism at Hanze University in the Netherlands and completed her Communication Studies degree from MacEwan University with a major in journalism.
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