RCMP officers with guns descended on SFU’s Burnaby campus in response to a gun scare on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019. (Courtney/Twitter)

No risk to public safety: Burnaby RCMP on why public not notified in SFU gun scare

A 19-year-old man was arrested, and a replica gun was found

Mounties say the public was never at risk during Tuesday’s gun scare at Simon Fraser University’s Burnaby campus.

It’s for that reason neither the university nor the Burnaby RCMP released any information about the incident until two hours after it began, Cpl. Daniela Panesar told Black Press Media in a statement Wednesday.

“We would like for the public to know that there was a large and immediate response to yesterday’s call and police quickly had the scene contained,” Panesar said.

“Officers on scene immediately engaged with SFU security in locating the suspect.”

The incident began around 2 p.m., when a large amount of RCMP descended on campus. They found and arrested a 19-year-old man wearing a RCMP logo ball cap, and found a replica gun in a bag that allegedly belonged to the man.

READ MORE: Man, 19, arrested after gun reported at SFU’s Burnaby campus

Parmar said that although police always consider warning the public, they were concerned Tuesday that people may have confused a man in an RCMP ball cap with actual Mounties, some of whom were plain clothes officers and could have looked similar to the 19-year-old.

That could lead to a “considerable concern for police officer safety,” she noted.

During the incident and into the evening, multiple students took to social media to ask why no one told them there was a gun scare.

“Anyone know what’s happening with police and kicking people out of the dorms?” asked Reddit user hijulyy.

“SFU Security drops the ball again with keeping students informed and keeping safety at the forefront,” user SergeantP posted.

“@SFU there’s about 20 police cars and low flying helicopters at Burnaby campus. Apparently a gun threat??? Maybe you guys could shed some light as to what is going on,” Tayla Jae Jackson asked on Twitter.

In an email sent to students Wednesday night, SFU said student safety is their priority.

“We try to share information as it is confirmed, and when and where it is appropriate and safe to do so. When a campus wide notification is needed I want to assure you that we have notification systems in place, but it is also important to note that it is not always safe to send out an alert as a situation is in progress.”

The university did not send out any alerts, or post information to social media, until later Wednesday evening.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Climate, reconciliation and industry top all candidates agenda in Terrace

Debate was the candidate’s last opportunity to address voters in a public forum

Climate change, economy and reconciliation take centre stage at Oct. 15 All-Candidates Forum

Six of the eight candidates were in attendance at the Smithers event

Renewal plan for 9th to be subject of meeting

District, businesses to consider options

Soup kitchen to be added to Salvation Army’s Houston services

Need for food growing as living costs rise

Greta Thunberg meets with First Nations chief in Fort McMurray

Thunberg has turned her protest against climate change into a global movement

Canucks hang on for 3-2 win over Rangers in New York

Vancouver scores three times in first period

More beef products recalled due to possible E. coli contamination

The food safety watchdog has been investigating possible E. coli 0157:H7

B.C. VIEWS: How to get the best deal on your ICBC car insurance

ICBC slowly being dragged into the 21st century

Pot legalization has gone ‘well’, but ‘yellow flags’ on vaping: task force chair

Canada legalized cannabis for non-medical use on Oct. 17, 2018,

ELECTION 2019: Federal leaders hit final 24 hours of campaign

Many leaders remain in B.C. for the final hours of the campaign

Most Read