Hay River's courthouse in August 2019. Sarah Pruys/Cabin Radio
Charges have been stayed against two people who were arrested when RCMP raided homes in Hay River last summer.
At the time of the June 2022 raids, police said one property they searched in the Riverbend Road area had been reinforced to prevent officers getting in.
Specialized units from Alberta and the Yukon were used to break through what RCMP called “enhanced enforcements on the doors and windows.”
Two weeks after the raids, RCMP announced that 43-year-old Hay River resident Kallaya Dow and 27-year-old Calgary resident Mahad Mohamed Adar had each been charged with possessing the proceeds of crime. Adar also faced six counts of failing to comply with previous release conditions, ranging from breaking curfew to carrying a weapon outside his home.
Last week, all charges against Adar were stayed. The charge against Dow was stayed on Tuesday.
A stay means the Crown has decided not to go ahead with the prosecution. It isn’t the same as withdrawing the charges – a stay means the Crown could decide, later, to continue prosecuting – but often has the same ultimate effect.
NWT chief prosecutor Alex Godfrey confirmed all charges had been stayed, quoting guidelines that state a prosecution should not occur “unless there is a reasonable prospect of conviction and the prosecution would best serve the public interest.”
The guidelines continue: “If the available evidence does not meet the reasonable prospect of conviction standard, the decision to prosecute threshold is not met, and the prosecution should not proceed.”
Godfrey told Cabin Radio: “Our office concluded that we did not meet the test as described above and we ended the prosecution.”
He said no further information about that decision was available.
In court documents, police state that more than $6,000 in cash was seized from one home during the June 2022 raids, alongside a stun gun baton, various cellphones and a scale.
Earlier this week, Territorial Court heard that most of what was seized is set to be forfeited, but Dow is seeking to have one cellphone and a tablet returned.
In a separate proceeding, the NWT Rental Office earlier this year ordered a tenant referred to by the initials KD to pay more than $11,000 to cover damage to a property raided by police in June last year.
That proceeding appeared to refer to the same set of events.
Rental officer Janice Laycock said the tenant owed the money to the Hay River Housing Authority to pay for damage left behind after they tried to barricade their home against the RCMP.
Laycock wrote that the tenant had “installed steel bars across the entry door” in an apparent effort to stop police and “explosives were required to gain entry.”