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Man accused of brandishing handgun at pub denied bail

Jordan Gambler, 25, accused of uttering threats, unsafe use of a firearm
An Edmonton Police Service photo of Jordan Gambler, who is charged with pointing a handgun at a patron at a Dawson Creek bar.

An Edmonton man accused of pointing a handgun at a Dawson Creek bar patron was denied bail in provincial court Thursday. 

Jordan Gambler, 25, was charged with firearms offences and uttering threats after a Nov. 10, 2015 incident at Spike's Pub.

Gambler, an Edmonton resident, was passing through town at the time and was allegedly involved in an argument with a patron over a table which eventually became violent. The dispute began when the patron told Gambler, who is First Nations, that "we don't serve your kind here."

Crown counsel Kevin Blocka said the victim mistook Gambler for a friend and intended the remark as a joke. "Clearly, that was not how it was taken," he said. 

According to evidence given at Thursday's bail hearing, the two men moved outside to fight when Gambler threatened to "pop him in the head," revealing a pistol. 

A bartender eventually called the RCMP. Officers searched the neighbourhood for Gambler but were unable to find him. He was later arrested outside the province and transferred to jail in Prince George.

Officers interviewed at least two patrons at the bar, one of whom said she saw the gun—described as a "customized" .45 pistol with a tan handle. She said Gambler removed the magazine to reveal the bullets, according to the Crown. 

Surveillance footage also appeared to show Gambler displaying an object to other patrons outside the bar, the Crown alleges. 

Another witness interviewed by police said that during the standoff, Gambler tried to intimidate the other man by telling onlookers to Google his name, saying he was wanted by the Edmonton Police Service. The Crown says this was how witnesses were able to identify the accused to police. 

Gambler's defence attorney argued his client could be expected to keep the peace if released, offering a $5,000 deposit to be forfeited if he reoffends.  

He added police never found the gun described by witnesses, raising reasonable doubts about the Crown's case against Gambler. 

Judge Richard Blaskovits sided with the Crown, which said there were "significant" questions about Gambler's likelihood to reoffend if released from custody. 

The Crown expects to call seven witnesses during the 2-3 day proceeding. Gambler will be in court April 12 to fix a date for trial. 

Gambler has not been proven guilty of the alleged offences.