Nanaimo 911 caller who reported hoax school shooting arrested for mischief

Nanaimo 911 caller who reported hoax school shooting arrested for mischief
File photo.

Police say a 34-year-old man who faked a school shooting call to Nanaimo RCMP has been arrested for public mischief.

The caller made “numerous” 911 calls just after 1 p.m. Thursday reporting that shots were being fired at a local school and there multiple people had died.

Police notified two schools in the area, a five-block radius in south Nanaimo reported by the caller, Fairview Elementary and Nanaimo and District Secondary School, which were both placed into lockdown.

Staff at both schools reported no concerns, emergencies or suspicious activities taking place.

“When the officers involved were satisfied that it appeared the calls were a hoax, the investigation moved towards identifying who was responsible,” said Const. Gary O’Brien of the Nanaimo RCMP.

Investigators then traced the location of the phone used to make the calls and identified the person who it belonged to.

Then at around 2 p.m., they found the suspected caller in his vehicle, parked along Howard Avenue.

The man was taken into custody on charges of public mischief and breach of pre-existing conditions from previously police encounters. Police said they also discovered the cell phone used to make the calls in the vehicle.

“This was a disturbing sequence of events that was resolved quickly and efficiently through the combined efforts of the RCMP North Island Operations Communications Centre (OCC) and our officers,” said O’Brien. “The training of the OCC and their real-time communication with officers in the area, allowed for the retrieval of timely information from police databases and for this incident to be resolved safety and efficiently.”

The suspect remained in custody Friday, according to RCMP.



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