A Sylvan Lake youth was recognized by the RCMP for his brave actions when a man attempted to steal a vehicle he was inside.  

On Jan. 26, RCMP responded to a report of an attempted stolen vehicle with a youth in the backseat.  

With the help of the youth and his mother, RCMP found and arrested the suspect nearby, without harm to the public.  

Corporal Sean Sexsmith explained that it was important for the RCMP to recognize the youth because he showed bravery in a high-stress situation, was able to stay calm, and retained details that helped in the arrest.  

“In this instance, this young person stayed very calm, did all the right things, and was able to provide a very detailed and accurate description of the suspect in this high-stress situation,” Sexsmith said. “It's just phenomenal. The detail that this young person was able to give us describing the suspect, and we're very happy that it turned out the way it did.”  

When the youth’s family found out he was going to be recognized, they were ecstatic.   

“The parents weren't surprised because it sounds like he is a very good kid, he's got a good head on his shoulders, and he's very smart,” Sexsmith said.   

To limit crimes of opportunity, the RCMP conducted Project Cold Start, where they checked if vehicles were unlocked and had the keys inside.  

During the project, police found many vehicles that were running and unlocked, and worked to educate the owners on ways to safeguard their vehicles.  

“It's similar to theft from motor vehicles. People are opportunists and they're looking for vehicles that are easy to grab, ones that are running, and ones that have the keys inside,” Sexsmith said. “We recommend doors locked, keys not in the vehicle, and if the keys have to be in the vehicle that the drivers in the vehicle too.”  

To prepare for the summer, the Sylvan Lake RCMP will bring in additional officers for an enhanced policing schedule every Friday through Sunday.