Skip to main content

Mounties in Alberta say they are investigating a video posted on social media that shows teens in an east-central town counting down and screaming a racial slur during a New Year’s Day party.

RCMP spokesman Corporal Troy Savinkoff says an investigator has already spoken to many of the teens who attended the party in St. Paul on Saturday.

“It’s a large group of kids so it’s conceivable that they’re from more than one area,” Cpl. Savinkoff said Wednesday.

“Public incitement of hatred could be one of the criminal offences that our investigators would be looking at to see if it meets any elements of that particular event. We do have an investigator who has looked up the video itself for investigation.”

Cpl. Savinkoff said two people complained about the event to officers following the party attended by teens believed by investigators to be between 16- and 18-years-old.

The video posted on Instagram shows a male standing above a crowd of partygoers with drinks in their hands and telling them to scream a racial slur against Black people on the count of three.

The crowd screams the slur as the sound of laughter is heard from the person recording.

Glen Brodziak, superintendent of St. Paul Education, said he was disheartened to see the video and noted the matter is being reviewed.

“The Education Act says that even off-site behaviour needs to be looked into and taken care of so [an] investigation is currently under way,” he said.

Although he couldn’t get details of that investigation, he said “we’ll be looking at if this would present any harm physically or mentally to any of our students while they are in school or when they come back to school.

“I’m a citizen here in this community and, in my role as superintendent, it was disheartening and it was disturbing to see,” added Mr. Brodziak.

This story was produced with the financial assistance of the Facebook and Canadian Press News Fellowship.

We have a weekly Western Canada newsletter written by our B.C. and Alberta bureau chiefs, providing a comprehensive package of the news you need to know about the region and its place in the issues facing Canada. Sign up today.