Kingsway Mall shooting victim speaks out

The Kingsway Mall shooting victim is in hospital recovering from injuries. As Laura Krause reports, he wants to see more mental health support and oversight for those on bail.

The man randomly shot outside Edmonton’s Kingsway Mall this week believes more needs to be done to address the ongoing mental health and addiction crisis.

Tyler James Marshall is still in hospital recovering from surgery, having lost his index finger when he was shot from behind Tuesday night. While he’s not ready to speak on camera, he wants to share his story speaking to CityNews over the phone Thursday afternoon.

Photo of Tyler Marshall in the hospital. (Photo Credit: Tyler Marshall)

Edmonton Police have arrested and charged 28-year-old Dakota Jackson Grey with a string of random attacks in the Kingsway Mall Walmart parking lot. In a news release, they say he was carrying methamphetamine and was on a release order after he was previously charged with aggravated assault.

That release included a weapons prohibition, which added to the suspect’s already-issued lifetime firearms prohibition.

READ MORE: Charges laid in Kingsway Mall shooting, carjacking

When asked about these release conditions, Marshall says he is still processing, “I keep going back and forth. Sometimes I’m angry. How does this happen?

“But also, it’s our justice system. No one is helping these people.” Marshall says, that between the drugs found on the suspect and the incoherent mumbling he heard before he was shot from behind, he questions what mental health and addiction supports exist for those released on bail.

Working in the Kingsway area, Marshall says he’s noticed an escalation of those appearing to be in crisis.

One former Edmonton police officer turned criminologist says he’s right to question the support.

“It’s woefully inadequate, the mental health and addiction supports for individuals, specifically in provincial jails,” said Dan Jones, the chair of the Justice Studies at Norquest College. saying the resources in provincial jails and for those are bail are almost non-existent.  

Noting how probation officers are overtaxed and unable to spend a lot of time with these individuals.

“There’s just not a lot of resources in provincial jails and when you’re on bail, it’s almost non-existent,” said Jones.

He believes there needs to be more mental health and addiction resources to have a healthy and safe city.

“Inevitably, everybody gets out, so I think it’s really about how do we re-integrate individuals back into society,” said Jones.

“They’re given certain conditions, they’re believed to be non not dangerous to society, and then they’re sent out. And really, monitored minimally. And unfortunately, it becomes a role of the police that’s not really the police role, monitoring people on bail.”

Marshall doesn’t remember much from the Tuesday night shooting, but remembers hearing mumbling and yelping as the suspect “snuck up on him”.

He tells CityNews he is keeping in good spirits despite losing his finger. He believes his injuries could have been much worse, sharing an image of mangled keys that were in his back pocket, taking a lot of the brunt force from the sawed-off shotgun.

Photo of Tyler Marshall’s keys following the shooting at Kingsway Mall. (Photo Credit: Tyler Marshall)

He questions how the shooter got a gun with a lifelong firearms prohibition.

Dan Jones says “Getting a gun is the easiest thing to do, especially if you are a connected person. If you’ve been involved in criminogenic factors and a criminogenic lifestyle, you’re going to know how to get a gun,” Jones says it’s become remarkably easier to get your hands on a gun over the last 25 years.

“Talking to members of the police service recently, they’re seeing guns on average once every day or so. That’s a lot of guns,” said Jones.

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