A recent police investigation in Regina has become an example of outstanding communication between police agencies, as well as the dedication, diligence and skill of individual RPS officers to discover the identity and location of a suspect in a threatening case. As a result, a 15 year-old Regina female is facing a charge of Uttering Threats on social media against the staff and students of a Regina high school. This case also serves as a reminder of how seriously national and international police agencies regard internet threats, and how serious the consequences can be for any alleged offender.
In the early morning hours of October 4, 2022, the Regina Police Service received a message via CPIC (the Canadian Police Information Centre) from the Lethbridge Police Service about a possible school shooting. Lethbridge Police had been contacted by Interpol, which intercepted a Snapchat message, showing a picture of two select-fire/automatic rifles and a vague message hinting something would happen at “school”. Some of the information initially suggested the target might be in Alberta, but further investigation pointed to the possibility of an incident in Regina. With only limited information, increasing urgency, and the potential for great harm, a member of the Regina Police Service Technological Crimes Unit began an investigation which involved gaining special permissions from Internet Search engines and telecommunications providers to try determine the source of the message and the identity of the sender. When that wasn’t enough, persistence and meticulous attention to detail finally led to identification of a viable suspect and the school she attended. School authorities were contacted and the School Resource Officer was sent to make an arrest which, fortunately, occurred at 8:50 a.m. on October 5th, at the suspect’s home, and not at the high school. Further investigation led to charges against a 15 year-old female. Police determined the suspect did not have access to firearms; the photograph of the weapons was an image taken from the internet; the criminal charge, however, is real.
The young person cannot be named in accordance with the provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act. The 15 year-old is charged with Uttering Threats, section 264.1(1) of the Criminal Code. The youth appeared in Youth Court on Wednesday, October 5, 2022, at 2:00 p.m.