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Man enters mall with concealed umbrella, SWAT & Helos sent to keep the peace


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  • Man enters mall with concealed umbrella, SWAT & Helos sent to keep the peace

    No rifle after all: High alert and wide relief at the mall

    "BURLINGTON — In retrospect, the young man probably wishes he had just worn his rain jacket. As it was, he set out against the weather with an umbrella, a choice that in another time probably would have passed without consequence.

    But in the age of the orange alert, when airport public announcement systems and news reports sound a thrum of warnings about dangers in our midst, the umbrella protruding from his backpack during a visit to the Burlington Mall yesterday looked, to some people, like a gun.

    After two employees reported a man with what seemed to be a short rifle ducking into a Nordstrom restroom, some 40 police descended on the scene, ushered out alarmed customers, and blockaded the mall as shopkeepers locked themselves into their stores and traffic on the roadways outside piled up in all directions.

    With helicopters whirring overhead and SWAT teams securing the premises, the umbrella-toting man, oblivious that the furor had anything to do with him, returned to his job at Lahey Clinic nearby.

    There, he caught a report on television of what was happening. In a thoroughly modern moment, he realized that he was the wanted man being shown on surveillance tape.

    He quickly called authorities to explain, but it would be some time before they could verify his story and declare the mall safe.

    “You don’t see something like that every day in the mall,’’ said Jody Joyce, a Sears employee who was taking a break with a co-worker when they saw that a wing to the Nordstrom store had been closed off.

    Minutes later, a phalanx of SWAT team members in shields and body armor marched through the mall.

    Police went out of their way to praise the workers who notified authorities for their attentiveness and active response. Police said public safety can hinge on individual wariness.

    “We are always telling people to be vigilant,’’ Burlington Police Chief Michael Kent said at an afternoon press conference. “This is what we want.’’

    Five people mistook the umbrella for a rifle, police said, in part because the man carried it in a backpack so its long handle jutted above his shoulders.

    Police also praised the man, whom they did not identify, for ending the scare by calling police as soon as he realized he was the suspect in question to explain the situation.

    “We appreciate that he put an end to it a lot sooner’’ than it would have otherwise, Kent said.

    Lahey Clinic said the employee heard the description of the alleged gunman shortly after arriving at work and immediately called police to tell them he had been at the mall and fit the description.

    Police interviewed him at Lahey and quickly sorted through the confusion.

    “The situation is cleared; there was no threat,’’ State Police said. “The male does not have a weapon.’’

  • #2
    ****ing rediculous!

    "Po Po coming through!" all rights reserved DJS

    'Do we really need 'smart bombs' to drop on these dumb bastards?'

    M16/AR15/M4 Armorer


    • #3
      If it had been me, I probably would have been shot dead in a hail of bullets.
      What is Perseverance?
      -Perseverance is commitment, hard work, patience, endurance.
      -Perseverance is being able to bear difficulties calmly and without complaint.

      BOP - BPA - ICE


      • #4
        Same thing happened in Council Bluffs, IA Mall on Lockdown except the actual perp was hiding like everyone else afraid of the sniper the swat team was after.


        • #5
          So it might be a good idea to stop marketing my Umbrellas made with surplus M1 Garand stocks?
          "Corruptisima republica plurimae leges."

          "The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws."
          - Cornelius Tacitus


          • #6

            Originally posted by mitojo
            I was once thanked by two citizens in one day. Weird.


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