Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut November 08, 2012 - 3:53 pm

Igloolik resident pleads guilty to gun charges, threatening RCMP

Shawn Kappianaq, 20, set for sentencing Dec. 4

DAVID MURPHY

Updated 5:35 p.m. Nov. 9

An Igloolik man has pleaded guilty to a number of charges in relation to a Aug. 7 standoff in Igloolik.

Shawn Kappianaq, 20, pleaded guilty to six charges before Justice Sue Cooper at the Nunavut Court of Justice Nov. 8.

Kappianaq furrowed his brow and looked down at his feet while sitting next to defence lawyer Deanna Harris.

The charges against Kappianaq included:

• possession of a weapon for a purpose dangerous to the public;

• uttering threats;

• two counts of dangerous operation of a motor vehicle;

• breech of probation; and,

• mischief in relation to other people’s property.

On Aug. 7 two Nunavut RCMP members responded to a call at 6:30 p.m. requesting urgent help and reporting that a man had been trying to kill himself, an Aug. 8 RCMP news release said.

When police arrived, they saw Kappianaq with the gun — forcing the two officers to take cover. They called for backup, and tried to calm the distraught man.

Kappianaq then made threats to police and told them he wanted the police to kill him.

He fled on an all-terrain vehicle that was not his, with the rifle still in his hands.

Soon after, he crashed into the side of an RCMP truck in which a police officer was sitting.

After two hours of negotiations, police arrested Kappianaq.

Kappianaq has been held in custody since Aug. 7.

At the time, Supt. Hilton Smee called the incident “truly deeply disturbing.”

This incident capped off a busy summer for Nunavut RCMP, dealing with several gun scares around the territory.

This spawned an RCMP-Government of Nunavut joint gun safety campaign, where wildlife and RCMP officers go door-to-door, educating Nunavummiut about gun safety, and handing out safety locks to gun owners.

Kappianaq is scheduled for sentencing Dec. 4 in Iqaluit.

An agreed statement of facts will be read at that time.

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