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.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Here are Kitimat’s 10 worst streets and intersections for collisions

A look at the top 10 roads and intersections for crash numbers in Kitimat.

Pretivm Resources reports fatality at Brucejack mine

The isolated incident occurred last Friday, and the employee passed away on Sunday in hospital

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

“How many more years is this going to continue?”: Kitimat resident wants better District response to front yard sinkholes

The sinkholes are caused by an aging storm sewer, which the District says they are working to fix.

In Our Valley: Louise Barbetti

Louise Barbetti has spent her life dedicated to the welfare of the Haisla students and community.

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

J.T. Miller leads Vancouver with goal and an assist

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Two people die in propane heated outdoor shower near Princeton

Couple was attending a long weekend gathering

Study shines light on what makes LGBTQ+ youth feel safe in a community

The study goes beyond looking at school or family supports

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

B.C. to allow customers to buy cannabis online for in-store pickup at private shops

Age verification will still be required inside the store

30% of British Columbians would ‘wait and see’ before taking COVID vaccine: poll

Some are concerned about side effects, while others don’t think the virus is a big deal

What exactly is ‘old growth’ B.C. forest, and how much is protected?

Forests minister Doug Donaldson doesn’t support ‘moratorium’

Most Read