Po­lice make few changes to Com­mon­wealth se­cu­rity af­ter at­tack

Edmonton Sun - - NEWS - ClairE thEobald — With files from cather­ine Gri­wkowsky

Af­ter an of­fi­cer was hit by a car and stabbed out­side of an Ed­mon­ton Eski­mos game on Sept. 30, a spokesper­son for the Ed­mon­ton po­lice said any changes to their se­cu­rity de­tail for the first home game since the at­tack will be mi­nor.

“Plans in place were al­ready ro­bust,” said Insp. Re­gan James with the field re­sponse branch, in a writ­ten state­ment. “There will be some ad­just­ments that will not likely be rec­og­nized by pa­trons.”

At 8:15 p.m. on Sept. 30, a Chevro­let Mal­ibu rammed into a po­lice bar­ri­cade out­side of Com­mon­wealth Sta­dium.

Const. Michael Ch­ernyk, 48, an 11-year vet­eran of the po­lice, was stand­ing be­hind a traf­fic bar­ri­cade and in front of his po­lice car near 107A Av­enue and 92 Street when he was hit by the car, launch­ing him fourand-a-half me­tres through the air.

A male sus­pect leaped from the ve­hi­cle and be­gan stab­bing Ch­ernyk with a knife be­fore flee­ing on foot.

“He was in a strug­gle for his life, hold­ing on to his gun with one hand and block­ing the knife with his other,” said Ed­mon­ton po­lice Chief Rod Knecht, in a 3 a.m. press con­fer­ence the morn­ing af­ter the at­tack. “It is a tes­ta­ment to his ex­pe­ri­ence and train­ing that he sur­vived the con­fronta­tion.”

Ch­ernyk suf­fered stab wounds to his face and head and sig­nif­i­cant abra­sions to his arms in the at­tack. He was re­leased from hospi­tal within 24 hours of be­ing ad­mit­ted and later given a hero’s wel­come at the home opener of the Ed­mon­ton Oil­ers game at Rogers Place on Oct. 4.

Ab­du­lahi Hasan Sharif, 30, faces 11 charges in­clud­ing five counts of at­tempted mur­der in con­nec­tion to both at­tacks.

The Eski­mos face the Toronto Arg­onauts Satur­day at 5 p.m. @ClaireTheobald

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