Montreal police rush to university amid reports of gunshots

Officer says found objects indicated an armed person might have been in building

Montreal police rushed to a downtown university on Thursday afternoon after reports of a loud noise that some people believe may have been gunshots.

Reports that an armed man was inside prompted rifle-toting police officers to enter the building.

Montreal police spokesman Raphael Bergeron said there were no injuries and no signs of blood. He said objects were found that indicated an armed person might have been in the building.

Ambulances also rushed to the Universite du Quebec in Montreal in case of casualties.

Police say they received calls about a loud bang inside the building housing the university’s education faculty, which is near the busy Berri-UQAM subway station.

“What is important is everyone is safe and no one is hurt,” said UQAM spokesman Daniel Hebert. “Police are sweeping the building and, if everything is fine, we will resume as usual this evening. If there is a risk, the building will remain closed until further notice.”

Jonathan Hille, a communications student, said he heard a message over the intercom but that he didn’t see anybody panic.

“Then I saw 20 policemen and I thought ‘This is a big deal’,” Hille said. “We thought this is like Dawson. I was pretty worried because a lot of my friends were studying for exams when this happened.”

Hille was referring to the shooting at Dawson College in Montreal in September 2006 when a gunman killed one student and wounded about 20 others.

– The Canadian Press