Tenant must pay $11,000 to cover damages after RCMP drug raid

An RCMP vehicle in Hay River
An RCMP vehicle in Hay River. Ollie Williams/Cabin Radio

A tenant must pay more than $11,000 to the Hay River Housing Authority to cover the damage left behind after they tried to barricade a home against an RCMP drug raid.

The tenant had “installed steel bars across the entry door” in an apparent effort to stop police, an NWT rental officer said in a January decision. “Explosives were required to gain entry into the unit.”

The sum they must pay also includes the cost of repairing other damage to the property during the tenancy – the exact location in Hay River isn’t given in the rental officer’s decision – and further damage after the same person broke back into the premises multiple times after their tenancy formally ended.

“Based on the evidence and testimony, the respondent caused damages to the rental premises during their tenancy, including those caused by the fortifications and other renovations not approved by the landlord,” rental officer Janice Laycock concluded.



“The damages caused by the RCMP during their forced entry during the drug raid are a direct result of the respondent’s actions by not allowing entry to the rental premises and fortifying the entry.

“The unit was not cleaned as required [and] further damages were caused by the respondent when they forced entry after their tenancy was terminated and they vacated the rental premises. I find the respondent responsible for expenses to repair damages and cleaning totalling $11,405.81.”

The tenant is identified only by their initials in the decision.

They had previously been ordered to pay thousands of dollars to cover other damage and had been the subject of an order evicting them from the premises in April last year, but were still there in June when RCMP carried out a drug raid.



A raid of a home with “enhanced enforcements on the doors and windows” was reported by RCMP in a news release that same month.

Specialized support units from Alberta and the Yukon were called on to help officers enter that home, RCMP stated at the time.

The costs sought by the Hay River Housing Authority included $375 for “picking up glass and other dangerous debris” after the raid, more than $5,000 related to window damage, and $834 replacing a front door apparently damaged in the raid.

The housing authority charged $657 for “removing and disposing of all abandoned property,” testifying that its staff had tried to drop off the tenant’s possessions at their mother’s house as requested, “but the mother was not willing to store the items.”

Rental officer Laycock accepted the full claim from the housing authority, saying it was “reasonable and supported by evidence.” The tenant did not appear at the hearing or send anyone to represent them.

A separate order instructs the tenant to pay a further $1,000 for rental arrears and “compensation for use and occupation” in the months after their tenancy formally ended.