New Brunswick

Threats that closed francophone schools in northwest deemed hoaxes

All schools and offices in the Francophone Northwest School District were closed after police received two threats Wednesday morning.

Edmundston police are investigating 'acts of public mischief ' and call for public's help

Schools were closed Wednesday in the Francophone Northwest School District because of threats that turned out to be hoaxes. (Kassandra Nadeau/Radio-Canada)

Edmundston police say the threatening calls that led to widespread closures of francophone schools in northwestern New Brunswick were hoaxes.

All schools and offices in the Francophone Northwest School District were closed for the day after police received two threats on Wednesday morning. 

The police said in a statement there were calls at 5:34 a.m. and 6:15 a.m. that detailed specific threats to an Edmundston school. 

"Our investigation has shown that there was never a real threat and we can confirm that it is a hoax," Insp. Steve Robinson with the Edmundston Police Force said in a followup statement Wednesday afternoon. 

"The investigation is now revolving around acts of public mischief."

Police acknowledged early in the day that the calls could have been a Halloween stunt, but they could not "take any chances in situation like this."

More than 5,000 students and more than 400 teachers at 18 schools were affected by the closure in the Grand Falls, Edmundston, Saint-Quentin and Kedgwick regions.

All schools and offices are scheduled to open on Thursday.

"We are relieved by the outcome and would like to thank the parents for their understanding," said district Supt. Luc Caron in a statement. "Every school is ready to welcome and accompany students and staff members tomorrow."

Edmundston police continue to investigate the calls and are asking the public to come forward with information that could help.