A 54-year-old man has been arrested and charged after allegedly calling in two separate bomb threats over the weekend.
A media release Tuesday from Toronto police stated the man had been charged with five counts of public mischief and five counts of endangering life.
The man allegedly called the TTC last Friday, making a bomb threat at either York Mills or Eglinton subway stations. On Sunday, he allegedly made another threat directed specifically at York Mills.
Police located the man at Eglinton station that day, said Const. Jennifferjit Sidhu of the Toronto police.
“Really what they were are threats. There’s no credibility to them. –Brad Ross
Though the police believed the public was not in danger, the man was charged with endangering life. In a phone interview with Humber News on Tuesday, Sidhu was able to clarify the charge.
“He did put out a threat, so he’s charged with the threat. But could he possibly carry out the threat? He does not have the capacity to do so,” she said.
Aaron Finkler appeared in court on Monday.
Brad Ross, executive director of corporate communications for the TTC, said although transit officials take threats seriously they do not make a statement about the threats at least in part to avoid encouraging copycats.
“Really, what they were are threats. There’s no credibility to them. However, whenever threats of this measure are made, we do need to hold service, we do need to check, we do need to take some measures to investigate,” said Ross.
“We do take them very seriously – we have to.”
Ross said there’s a protocol in place for when these types of issues arise. If need be, TTC officials suspend service for police to check areas in question and broadcast the commonly used announcement that begins with the phrase, “Due to a police investigation…”
“There are many police investigations that do occur for a variety of reasons; whether it’s a suspicious package, or an unattended package for example – which are almost always benign,” said Ross.
“We don’t publicize them because we don’t want to cause a copycat and we don’t want to cause undue alarm or panic.”
Ross said the TTC encourages customers and staff to be vigilant.