Langara College in Vancouver (Wikimedia Commons)

Man arrested after suspicious fire prompts evacuation at Vancouver college

Vancouver police say the man in his 20s was eventually arrested by transit police in Surrey

A man has been arrested following a suspicious fire and subsequent building evacuation at Langara College.

Students were ordered to leave buildings on the Vancouver campus just before noon on Monday, police said. Langara remained closed Tuesday.

After speaking with witnesses, officers determined a suspect had entered the college with incendiary devices, and may have lit one or more fires before fleeing.

Const. Jason Doucette said officers recovered “two or three” devices that had allegedly been deliberately placed, and several fires occurred, but an estimate on the damage was not available.

“There were actual fires throughout. Some devices did go off, some didn’t,” he said.

“The explosive disposal unit (has) gone through the school, they have located devices, examined them and destroyed them,” said Doucette.

A male suspect was later identified and arrested in Surrey by Metro Vancouver Transit Police.

The man, in his 20s, remains in custody. His name will not be released unless charges are laid.

A note on the college’s website confirms police have completed a sweep of all campus buildings and have declared the college “secure,” but classes at the West 49th Avenue campus were cancelled Tuesday and the daycare was also closed.

“We recognize that employees and students may have left behind important personal belongings and that some faculty may need to collect exam materials; information on the process to recover them will be provided (Tuesday) morning,” the college said.

No one was hurt.

Anyone with information on the fires is asked to call Vancouver police or Crime Stoppers.


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