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San Mateo, CA Police Department
Monday March 26th, 2018 :: 06:42 p.m. PDT


*FINAL UPDATE* SMPD Places Man into Protective Custody That Threatened to Shoot at a School While in Big 5

**FINAL UPDATE- Man in protective custody**
This afternoon, March 26, 2018, San Mateo Police received a call from an allied agency referring us to an individual that they believed to be the man who made a threatening statement at Big 5 Sporting Goods last Friday, March 23, 2018. Our officers contacted the man and interviewed him regarding the incident. The man admitted to an SMPD officer that he was the person involved, was joking when he made the statement in Big 5 and apologized. SMPD  placed the man into protective custody at a local hospital for a mental health evaluation and a threat assessment. Due to the confidential nature of the mental health evaluation, SMPD is not releasing the man’s identifying information.
We want to thank the community, media, and our local law enforcement partners for their extraordinary response to our request for assisting with identification of this subject. SMPD will continue to partner with our local public and private schools to ensure the safety of our children and the community.
Sgt. Amanda Von Glahn
[email protected]

March 26, 2018
**UPDATE** Good Afternoon San Mateo, below is an update to the original investigation*

On Friday, March 23, 2018, at 5:50 p.m., SMPD received a report about a threat made at Big 5 Sporting Goods located at 2825 S El Camino Real. A customer reported hearing a man comment to an employee that he wanted to purchase a firearm. The man then threatened to shoot up a school and asked the employee for a good shirt to wear. Employees of Big 5 Sporting Goods told the man to leave, which he did. A witness in the store called our dispatch and the media to report the incident and our officers responded out immediately and searched for the man, but he was not located. Although witnesses and store employees did not find the man’s threat to be credible, in an abundance of caution we are asking for the community’s help in identifying the subject to conduct a threat assessment. We have released both video from inside the store as well as a still frame photo to the public and allied agencies for assistance (see YouTube link below for video).
During the course of the investigation, SMPD learned the threat was not specific or articulable to any of our schools, and have worked in conjunction with our schools to follow our countywide school safety protocols. The school districts have reached out to parents to let them know of the incident and update them on their prudent plans.
While it can be unnerving for school communities to work through these issues, it is important to remember that the threats did not appear to be credible to the witnesses at the scene and that we maintain a sense of calm as we turn to our well developed and practiced school safety protocols adopted countywide. We all want to assure a reasonable, proportional, and sustainable response while recognizing that schools face a higher level of vulnerability in these challenging times.
We want to say thank you to the community members that are being observant and calling in potential tips. We appreciate how collaborative the public and private schools in our city have been during this investigation. We do want to let parents and students know that if you see something of concern, please alert SMPD immediately. We are here to keep our kids safe with your help. As a reminder, however, sharing speculation with others that is not confirmed is not helpful in maintaining a reassuring fact based response so that students, staff, and families can feel safe on school grounds.
SMPD has increased perimeter patrols and rotating uniformed presence around our school campuses. We have asked our school administrators and faculty to maintain a sense of security and awareness and to report any suspicious behavior or activity.  We are currently working with our schools on our safety and security protocols that complement the current county wide BIG 5 protocol, which can be found in the following link: San Mateo County Big Five Safety Protocols, which can be found on the following link:
Sgt. Amanda Von Glahn
[email protected]

San Mateo, CA Police Department
200 Franklin Pkwy
San Mateo, CA 94403

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 650-522-7700

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