Person who made Fort McMurray social media kidnapping threats identified: RCMP

File photo of an RCMP cruiser.
File photo of an RCMP cruiser. Global News

On Wednesday morning, Wood Buffalo RCMP said a female youth is responsible for sending a kidnapping threat on social media but charges haven’t been laid.

A day earlier, four people were arrested in Fort McMurray after an investigation into threats of kidnapping made on Instagram “involving students from different schools.”

Wood Buffalo RCMP began an investigation Tuesday after getting a report about the threats.

Police tracked down I.P. addresses of the individuals believed to be involved, which resulted in four people being arrested at a Fort McMurray home. Police said they found out a female youth made the threats after interviewing all four individuals. No one has been charged but police are continuing to investigate.

“There’s nothing specific to say who, if anyone, individually was targeted,” Wood Buffalo RCMP Cpl. George Cameron said Tuesday.

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Cameron said Fort McMurray schools went into “hold and secure” protocols Tuesday morning after being notified of the investigation by RCMP.

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“We don’t advise the schools to go into lockdown, we don’t advise them to go into hold and secure, they base their decisions just on the information that we give them,” Cameron said.

Cameron said the Catholic and public school districts lifted the protocols later Tuesday morning.

Cameron said it’s unusual for RCMP in Wood Buffalo to investigate a case of threats being made on social media, but if it does happen, those responsible can expect to be contacted by police.

“We do have intelligence units in that area, so if there is something that we feel, when it comes to social media, that maybe we should monitor a little bit more closely, we’ll certainly let our intelligence unit know,” Cameron said.

“We do take these types of incidents very seriously. Whether they’re a joke or whether they’re legitimate threats, we take them very seriously.”

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Police don’t believe there is an imminent threat to public safety in this case.