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City reviewing security measures after knifepoint robbery at Saskatoon campground


Some security changes could be on the way at Saskatoon’s Gordie Howe Campground after an armed robbery last week where a camper was held at knifepoint.

Police released information about the incident Friday. They say on Wednesday, a woman entered the campsite of a 75-year-old woman and held her at knifepoint, trying to steal a bike.

Jay Merritt runs the Saskatchewan RV Campers Facebook page, where he says the story garnered a lot of comments, ranging from outrage that this could happen, to concern for the elderly camper, to questions about general safety while camping.

“I’m hoping that this is just an isolated incident, and we don’t see this continue to happen,” he told CTV News.

Jay Merritt runs the Saskatchewan RV Campers Facebook page. (Carla Shynkaruk / CTV News)

Merritt is an avid camper, and while the robbery concerns him, he says it’s not surprising.

“I don’t think it’s a big secret to people out there stealing things that there’s a lot of money invested in a lot of these campsites,” he said.

Police say the thief forced the senior into her camper after she was confronted, where she stole more items. Then, at knifepoint, she was forced to load the stolen items into her vehicle.

The senior was told to get into the backseat of the truck. She managed to escape to a nearby campsite to get help.

Saskatoon police spokesperson Alyson Edwards told CTV news in an email that they don’t have official safety tips for urban camping but, recommended that people get to know their neighbours at the campground, and look out for each other.

Edwards encouraged anyone who sees suspicious activity to report it. It’s helpful to have a cell phone nearby, she said.

The City of Saskatoon operates the campground and said its the matter very seriously.

“It’s very disturbing, obviously,” said Andrew Roberts, the city’s director of recreation.

“We’re glad no one was physically injured, but a very frightening incident for the patron, other patrons and our staff.”

While the campground perimeter is fenced and there is security patrolling inside, according to Roberts, a full investigation is underway to determine what other measures can be taken to keep campers safer.

“Until I get that investigation and report completed, I can’t comment on what we might look at,” said Roberts.

He says some of those changes could be implemented for this camping season — something Merritt feels should be a given when in an urban setting like Holiday Park.

“If you are aware that your campground is in a place like that, then you should take additional steps to ensure the safety of your campers,” he said.

Safety measures like locking up valuables, getting to know fellow campers and researching the area are just a part of camping, says Merritt.

“It’s the same principle as camping in bear country, for example. You do your research, and these are the risks.” Top Stories

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