NEWS: Iqaluit July 21, 2017 - 10:00 am

Replica rifle prompts armed response from police in Nunavut capital

Two men arrested, released; RCMP say situation could have ended badly


If you live the 4000s block near downtown Iqaluit, you may have choked on your morning coffee at 6 a.m. July 19 if you happened to look out the window.

Iqaluit RCMP responded with weapons drawn Wednesday morning to an area near the Quikstop after receiving reports of a man wearing a mask and holding a firearm. 

A July 20 RCMP news release said several police members responded to the scene and tried to engage the male, “who initially refused to follow police commands.”

Two males were eventually arrested without further incident and later released. The suspect’s gun, seized by police, was found to be a “very realistic replica carbine,” or a short-barrelled rifle.

Police say the investigation continues and may lead to charges.

“Police have to treat every firearms call as if it is a real firearm. This situation could have turned out much differently, especially with the one male not following initial commands by police,” the RCMP news release said.

“People with these replica guns need to be cognizant how they are used and the perception of these guns with the general public and the police.”