A 26-year-old woman from Vancouver Island was fatally shot by a police officer she allegedly threatened early Thursday morning in northern New Brunswick.
Family has identified the woman as Chantel Moore and says the Indigenous woman had recently moved to the province from Vancouver Island to live with her mother and daughter.
Police in Edmundston New Brunswick said in a release that a 26-year-old woman from British Columbia was shot and killed by an officer after police went to an apartment on Hill Street at around 2:30 a.m.
Police did not release the woman’s identity.
Edmundston police say the officer was responding to a request to check on the well-being of a woman at an apartment building in the city.
They say the woman was holding a knife and made threats when she was fatally shot. It’s not clear how many shots were fired.
The release states resuscitation was attempted, but the woman died at the scene.
The force says it has requested an independent agency conduct a review of the shooting to ensure police actions were appropriate.
“At first the officer went on scene, and all of a sudden the person just exited the apartment with a knife and was attacking the officer,” Insp. Steve Robinson told reporters in New Brunswick Thursday.
“He had no choice but to defend himself.”
Moore is from the Tofino, B.C., area and had recently lived in Port Alberni.
Nora Martin, the sister of Moore’s grandmother, told CBC News that family members were called at 1 a.m. PT.
Family and friends were mourning online, posting photos of Moore.
“She was a very lovely young woman she was always happy, always bubbly and never ever knew her to be aggressive in any way,” said Moore’s grandfather Joe Martin.
“We’re just shocked, we’re shocked, we’re in disbelief that something like this could happen to one of our family members,” he said.
Robinson said he didn’t think the officer attempted to use non-lethal force
“Not that I know of, but the investigation is going to cover that,” he said.
Robinson said the force doesn’t have body cameras.
The force said New Brunswick RCMP will provide investigative and forensic support for the independent review.
“Very interested in trying to find out how the investigation is going to happen because this was another indigenous woman shot by a police officer, we need answers,” said Nuu-chah-nulth Tribal Council President Judith Sayers.
Mychele Poitras, a spokesperson for the City of Edmundston, said officers from Saint John are helping investigate but it hasn’t been determined which outside agency will carry out the review.
The officer wasn’t injured, Robinson said.
Robinson said the officer is “off work” and the force will wait until an outside investigation is complete before making a decision about suspension.
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Chantel Moore’s family, including her daughter and mother. You can find it here.
With files from The Canadian Press and CBC