Anonymous Threat: Campus Will Remain Open

Anonymous Threat: Campus Will Remain Open

Police investigate gun threat posted on 4chan

The University of Otago will remain open tomorrow as police investigate an anonymous gun threat made towards the Dunedin campus. 

The original post was made on Monday 5 October 2015 via social media site 4chan, an online bulletin board where users can anonymously post comments and share images. 

The post included a photo of a gun and advised people not to go to the University of Otago tomorrow:

“If you’re in Dunedin, I wouldn’t recommend going to Otago University on Wednesday. Notes have been taken from tactics used in other massacres and shootings. I know what works and what doesn’t.”  

Police say they are taking the matter very seriously while they assess the authenticity of the post with the High Tech Crime Group in Wellington.

“Our advice at this time is to be alert and vigilant but not alarmed while our investigation is ongoing," says Inspector Mel Aitken, acting Area Commander for Otago Coastal.

The police are also concerned about copycat behaviour, following references to the mass shooting in 2007 Virginia Tech in the United States. 

“We will deal firmly with any individuals associated with any such copycat threats,” says Aitken. 

The University of Otago has sent out a text to students: 

“A security threat has been made against the University of Otago (Dunedin campus) through social media. While the threat has not been substantiated at this time, it is being taken seriously and Police are investigating. We are working closely with the Police. Please check the University website for information from the Police Updates will be issued on the University website as and when required.”

Those with particular concerns about the threat can contact police or the university Campus Watch staff.


This article first appeared in Issue 26, 2015.
Posted 7:21pm Tuesday 6th October 2015 by Josie Cochrane.