A 17-year-old who may have had a firearm on the grounds of Brookswood Secondary has been arrested following Wednesday’s lockdown at the school.
The teen, believed to be the “suspicious male” seen on the school grounds, has been released from custody and is bound by a number of conditions, said Cpl. Holly Largy, spokesperson for the Langley RCMP.
Police now believe the incident stemmed from an earlier confrontation, involving pepper spray, between a Brookswood student and the suspect.
“Police believe he returned to the school grounds later in the day and may have been in possession of a firearm,” Largy said in a press release.
No firearm has been recovered, and police are still interviewing witnesses. The possibility that the gun was a replica is also under investigation.
Rumours began flying within minutes after the school lockdown began, including among parents in the school parking lot as they waited for their children to be released from the school.
“Rumours and conjecture on social media both during and after the events of yesterday did little to assist police in their efforts,” Largy said. “Rather, the rumours served to hinder the investigation and escalated the anxiety suffered by the parents waiting for their children.”
The lockdown began at around 2 p.m. after a student told the principal that someone had been seen on the school grounds, possibly with a gun.
Students remained in their classrooms as numerous RCMP officers arrived and began a search of the surrounding area. The Air One RCMP helicopter also circled the grounds for a time, and a canine officer was brought in to sweep the school.
Students were released one class at a time starting at about 3:30 p.m.
The investigation is ongoing, Largy said.
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