Sask. RCMP looking for man who fled scene after fatal shooting by police in southern Manitoba

Saskatchewan RCMP say they’re looking for a man who fled the scene after another man was fatally shot by police in the southern Manitoba town of Niverville Wednesday morning.

Manitoba RCMP said police shot a man in Niverville, about 20 kilometres south of Winnipeg, around 3 a.m. Wednesday.

The shooting happened in the area of Drovers Run, a business strip that runs parallel to Highway 311 through the town.

A woman told CBC News police were focused on an area around a Shell gas station and Tim Hortons restaurant at the corner of Drovers Run and Krahn Road.

Manitoba RCMP said a woman was taken into custody, but another man sped off in a stolen vehicle, RCMP say.

Two men in white garments look through a tarped off truck.
Police investigators examine a tarped off truck at a Shell gas station in Niverville on Wednesday morning. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

In a social media post around 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday, Saskatchewan RCMP said they’ve increased their presence in Esterhazy, Sask., near the border with Manitoba, in efforts to locate David Burling, 29.

They believe he is driving a green 2016 Subaru Crosstrek SUV with the Manitoba licence plate LJB 238.

An update about 20 minutes later said Burling is believed to be travelling westbound on Highway 22, toward the Fort Qu’Appelle area, northeast of Regina.

Burling is described as 5’2″ and 190 pounds, with black hair and hazel eyes.

Saskatchewan RCMP are urging residents in the area to be cautious and report anything suspicious.

Bullet holes in police vehicle

Manitoba police were also at a second scene earlier Wednesday, just southeast of Niverville, at the corner of Highway 59 and Provincial Road 305. A Winnipeg police cruiser was parked there earlier Wednesday with a portion of its front end smashed in and about a dozen bullet holes in its windshield.

RCMP say that is connected with the incident in the town. An RCMP cruiser could later be seen at Providence University College in Otterburne, south of Niverville, where police are also investigating.

“Some of our staff and faculty who live on campus … were aware of an event overnight,” said provost Nicholas Greco. 

“From what I can see, it looks like a vehicle came through this area, and there was some reports that I heard of ‘pops.'”

A police car with bullet holes in the windshield.
A Winnipeg police cruiser with bullet holes in the windshield is parked at the side of the highway south of Niverville. (Meaghan Ketcheson/CBC)

Drovers Run is expected to be blocked off for much of the day as police investigate, RCMP said.

‘Doesn’t seem like something that happens here’

David Polanski, who lives nearby the scene of the shooting in Niverville, said he woke up to the sound of screeching tires and multiple shots. He said it all unfolded “within a few minutes.”

“I heard screaming a little bit, like a female voice,” he said. “Then I saw cop lights everywhere, right? Then I heard screeching of tires. I thought it was a drug deal or something.” 

Polanski said he saw a police officer running with a shotgun, after which he decided to shut his doors to not interfere. He said a police later told him the people involved in the incident were from Winnipeg.

A man wearing a hat
David Polanski said he woke up to the sounds of screeching tires and screaming. (CBC)

“It doesn’t seem like something that happens here,” he said. “I like to live out of cities, quieter. [It’s] a little bit alarming.”

Henok Negash runs Negash Coffee, next door to the Tim Hortons.

“When you hear of a police shooting … in a small town, [it’s] never happened like this before,” he said. “It just shooks you a little bit…. You can tell everybody who comes in here is a little bit shocked.”

In a Wednesday morning notice to parents, Hanover School Division said Niverville’s elementary, middle and high schools have been placed in a hold and secure situation, usually used when there’s an emergency situation happening outside the school.

In a hold and secure, classes continue and students and staff can enter the building, but the school’s exterior doors are otherwise locked and monitored.

Students will spend recess and lunch inside school on Wednesday as a precaution, the division said.

In a statement posted to the town’s Facebook page, officials thanked Niverville residents for their “understanding and patience” in light of the shooting, and thanked the RCMP.

Man shot dead by police in Niverville

3 hours ago

Duration 3:23

A man was shot dead by police in the Manitoba town of Niverville early Wednesday. Both Mounties and the Winnipeg Police Service are on the scene. Police have a woman in custody and say one man took off in a stolen vehicle.