Why does the government refuse to change the law to allow police to track violent repeat offenders with Firearm Prohibition Orders? If they had, perhaps Buck Evans would still be alive today.
Evans’ most recent warrants, issued on November 28, 2018, were for possession of a controlled substance and failing to comply with his probation order.
In addition to those outstanding warrants, Buck Evans also had four (4) Firearms Prohibition Orders registered against him, including two lifetime firearm bans.
None of those prohibitions stopped Evans from illegally obtaining the gun he used to shoot at police.
A public inquiry into his death is pending but according to the Alberta government’s Fatality Inquiry Schedules, updated January 8, 2020, the investigation into Buck Evans death is not yet complete.
Melissa Dumais, identified as Evans’ girlfriend, readily admits the semi-automatic rifle was in Evans’ vehicle.
“He opened up the door and I saw his gun and I said, ‘Buck, why do you need that? What are you doing?’ He said, ‘I’m scared, I feel like something is going to happen to me’.”
Dumais insists Evans never touched the gun.
“The gun was nowhere near his hands. The driver had his hands up, I had my hands up. And Buck had his hands up. He wasn’t holding it at all. It was on the ground.”
Her statement contradicts the news release issued by the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team.
“The 34-year-old man was given verbal directions to exit the vehicle which he failed to comply with. Independent evidence gathered to date would suggest that the man was in possession of a firearm and that the firearm was, in fact, discharged by the man.”
Melissa Dumais says she will sue police for Buck Evans’ death.
“I hope that I can get the cops that did this to him, because I am going to be taking it to court. I have enough evidence that this was excessive force. It may make my life a living hell, in the end. So be it.”
Diane Delorme, Evans’ former girlfriend, doesn’t believe Edmonton Police needed to shoot him.
“I’m sure the police were doing their job, but they didn’t have to shoot, did they?”
She says he had a long criminal history but he wanted to turn his life around.
“I just want people to know that Buck wasn’t a monster that they portrayed him out to be. He had a good heart. He’s gone through a lot, but he’s still a good person at the end of it all.”
While this may be true, the fact remains that Buck Evans was in illegal possession of a firearm in violation of two lifetime Firearm Prohibition Orders. He was also wanted on outstanding warrants for other criminal offenses.
Buck Evans is dead today because he pointed a loaded gun at police and fired, not because he was a good person who was just misunderstood.
- 2005 – a 5-year firearm prohibition order
- 2011 – a 10-year firearm prohibition order
- January 2017 lifetime firearm prohibition order
- February 2018 lifetime firearm prohibition order
Should the government track violent repeat offenders with firearm prohibition orders?
Or should the government continue to ignore people like Buck Evans who, despite two lifetime firearm bans, still managed to get his hands on the rifle he used to shoot at Edmonton Police officers?