Man with rifle triggers Royal Columbian Hospital lockdown

Multiple police agencies respond after the man was seen entering the New Westminster hospital.

Multiple police agencies respond after man seen entering the New Westminster hospital

The Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster was in lockdown for 90 minutes Tuesday night after a man with a rifle was spotted entering the building. (GP Mendoza/CBC)

A man seen carrying a rifle triggered a 90 minute lock down of Royal Columbian Hospital in New Westminster late Tuesday night.

New West police say a report about a man with a rifle at the Sapperton SkyTrain station came in at 10:20 p.m. PT, followed by a further report that the man had entered the hospital near the underground parking garage.

A large police presence was seen at the hospital with multiple police agencies attending. (GP Mendoza/CBC)

Police also received information that man was intending to sell the gun. 

New Westminster police, Transit Police, Coquitlam and Surrey RCMP and the Integrated Police Dog Services were all part of a large police response to the incident. About 20 police vehicles were spotted outside the hospital along with officers with drawn weapons.

A search of the hospital and surrounding area turned up nothing. Police say they are now examining closed circuit video.

"It's with good reason that the safe transportation of firearms is a matter we take very seriously," said New Westminster Police Sgt. Jeff Scott. "We're asking for public assistance in passing along any information, including photo or video footage they may have of the suspect."

According to Fraser Health spokeswoman Tasleem Juma, access to Royal Columbian was restricted between 11 p.m. and 12:30 a.m. PT.

Police are examining closed circuit video, after a search failed to find anything. (GP Mendoza/CBC)

"Last night's issue was resolved quickly, without incident. Patient care was not impacted by this and the hospital remained fully operational," she said in a statement.

Any witnesses are asked to call the New Westminster Police Department at  604-525-5411.

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