|Schools locked down, man arrested on numerous charges|
|Local Content - Local News|
|Written by publisher|
|Tuesday, 23 March 2010 15:47|
By Marcia Love
A 40-year-old male appeared in Swift Current Provincial Court on March 22 facing numerous charges. He was arrested on March 19 in connection with complaints of a suspicious male seen in the Tompkins area.
At about 9:30 a.m., RCMP asked the Chinook School Division to lock down schools in the area, including Sidney Street School and Tompkins School, and be on alert for a white male, aged 40 to 50 years old, driving a blue or green Ford truck with British Columbia plates.
The suspicious man was first reported in the Tompkins area on March 18, where he was located but fled police.
Chinook School Division deputy director of education Kyle McIntyre said the RCMP were concerned the man may have been trying to abduct children.
“We had some reports saying (the man) was attempting to take pictures of children at schools,” he said. “The RCMP felt he was on the move and wanted all schools in our division to be on alert. We just wanted everyone to be aware of it and be cautious.”
The children remained indoors during the day until parents arrived to take their children home.
The man, who also faces 43 charges for serious crimes in Ontario as well as more from British Columbia, was arrested in the afternoon following an extensive search by Swift Current RCMP, Gull Lake RCMP, Morse RCMP, Shaunavon RCMP and Swift Current and Regina Dog Services.
McIntyre said this was the first time the school division has ever had to deal with a division-wide lock-down situation, but it was something the RCMP thought would be proactive.
“They weren’t sure where this guy was going and the safety of the kids is always the most important thing,” he said.
Lynette Ternes escorts her son home from school on Friday. After being alerted by RCMP about a suspicious man reportedly seen hanging around Tompkins school, area schools were locked down and students were not allowed to leave the premises without a parent. Photo by Marcia Love
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