'Abduction' at York University was a prank, police say
An apparent abduction at York University that sent campus security and police into high alert was nothing more than a prank, investigators now say.
Officers were called to a location near the university’s Faculty of Fine Arts just before 5 p.m. Wednesday, after witnesses reported seeing a person being forced into a van by two men.
But by Thursday afternoon, it was decided that the abduction was in fact a prank.
"Police have investigated the incident and spoken with the people involved. It has been revealed it was a prank played between the people involved," said a statement from the Toronto Police Service.
Police were initially told that an older model van approached an unidentified person on the York campus. Two men emerged from the van, grabbed the person and forced them through the van’s side doors.
Police initially appealed for public help in the case -- which was lacking such details as whether the apparent victim was male or female -- on Thursday morning. And news of the apparent incident had led York University to bolster security and police patrols in the area.
“We are deeply troubled by reported safety occurrences on our campus and we are supporting Toronto Police Service in its investigations,” the university said in a statement.
Campus security has been on high alert in recent days after six assaults were reported in less than four weeks. Five of those assaults were sexual in nature.