On Jan. 30, 1932, Albert Johnson, known as the Mad Trapper of Rat River, sealed his fate by killing RCMP Constable Edgar Millen.
Surly and unfriendly, Johnson built a cabin in the summer of 1931 at prime trapping grounds along the Rat River in the Northwest Territories—but he never got a licence to trap.
When trapping season started, members of the Loucheux First Nation found someone interfering with their traps—and the only new person on the scene was Johnson. They complained to Millen at Fort McPherson, south of Inuvik.
Millen sent out two investigators, who trekked a week to Johnson’s cabin. Met with surly resistance, the constables went to Aklavik for reinforcements and a search warrant. When the expanded party of four reached the cabin again on Dec. 31, 1931, Const. Alfred Ki...