Gangster involved in drive-by shooting wants to leave crime life to become a barber

A Calgary man who participated in a firearms-fuelled gang war on city streets has been sentenced to six years in prison while 11 other organized-crime, attempted murder and drug-related charges were withdrawn.

Abdul Amer, 21, and an accomplice were involved in a drive-by shooting in December 2015 when the pair sprayed another vehicle — which was occupied by two men — with gunfire. Neither of the targets of the shooting were injured.  

Originally charged with two counts of attempted murder in connection with the incident, Amer pleaded guilty in April to the lesser offence of discharging a firearm with intent to injure. On Thursday, Amer told Justice Karen Horner that he intended to step away from his former lifestyle once he’s out of prison.

“I learned my lesson,” said Amer. “I just want to get out and get on with my life.”

The shooting took place in the residential neighbourhood of Coral Springs, which prosecutor Heather Morris described as “a very dangerous situation.”

Amer is believed to be connected to Calgary’s family-based gang war that peaked in 2015 with about 100 shootings in the city. When he was charged, Amer’s brother and cousin were awaiting trial for of shooting-related offences.

Amer was one of several men charged with more than two dozen counts of attempted murders in what police described as series of organized crime-related shootings.

The withdrawn charges include three counts of attempted murder, conspiracy to murder, two criminal organization-related offences, discharging a firearm with intent to wound and possession of fentanyl, among others.

Defence lawyer Gavin Wolch said his client wants to get out of prison and work as a barber. 

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Sherwood Park

Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area.[7] It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary,[8] generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road).[9] Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.[9]

Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016,[6] Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.


Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.

The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton.[8] The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.

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