WINNIPEG – A 17 year old has been arrested after she entered the intersection of Portage Avenue and Main Street Tuesday morning and started waving a gun around.
Police received multiple calls around 9:50 a.m. about a woman being spotted in traffic, pointing what appeared to be a hand gun at passing drivers and pedestrians before pointing the weapon at her head.
Officers quickly took her in to custody. No one was hurt. Police say the gun was a replica handgun.
“It’s not a real firearm, however it was presented as one,” said Deputy Police Chief Gord Perrier. “Replica could include a variety of weapons right from the toy classification right to airsoft or pellet.”
Police did not say what the woman’s motive was.
The incident happened in front of hundreds of onlookers and Perrier says officers had to make a split-second decision about whether to use lethal force.
“I know that those officers were very, very concerned around the rest of the public that was in that area and if they had fired their weapons what might happen to those bullets they discharged, so they made those decision,” Perrier said.
Jason Krueger witnessed the scene and spoke with Global News.
“I was driving down Main Street, and saw the woman kind of waving the gun around and then pointing it at her head,” Krueger said.
“As soon as I saw the gun I turned onto Portage because I wanted to get out of there. I saw cops coming right away, it happened so fast.”
Robby Cheslock was another witness on scene and captured the event on his phone, and then posted it on Facebook.
“I heard sirens and people yelling. I looked and saw a lady in the middle of Portage and Main,” he posted.
“I thought it was something for protesting, then I saw cops with there guns and then saw the lady with a gun in her hand to her head with a white mask on. They cops kept yelling put the gun down. Then this semi truck goes and turns when I’m filming and all of a sudden she was on the ground.”
On another Facebook post, Mario R. Tomberli said he saw police wrestle the woman to the ground.
“Amazing how quickly and efficiently they reacted to a dangerous situation. She had a gun to her head and was holding a note and a single red rose,” he posted.
Photo courtesy of Alexis DeVito. With files from Global News.