Ohio suspect targets the wrong Ottawa with alleged bomb threat over Canada COVID-19 mask mandates

A 20-year-old man from Akron, Ohio, is facing potential criminal charges after allegedly issuing a bomb threat to police in Ottawa, Ohio, mistakenly thinking he was threatening police in the Canadian capital.

“Our dispatcher stayed on the line with him for quite a while we tried to determine what was going on,” Putnam County Sheriff’s Office Captain Brad Brubaker said Wednesday about the threat, which took place Monday, according to the local Lima News. “We ran a trace on the call, due to the emergency nature of it, and got a location in the Akron area.”

Brubaker went on to explain that the suspect called them again.

“He called back a second time claiming he had been shot. When he found out he was talking to Ohio and not Canada, he said he hadn’t been shot but was simply trying to waste time and resources because he didn’t agree with their mask mandate,” Brubaker said, who added that the caller admitted at that point there was no bomb.

Brubaker said the young man apparently called the police in Ottawa, Ohio after Googling the phone number for the police in Ottawa, Canada.

“You’d think with him being from Ohio, the ‘419’ area code might have rung a bell,” Brubaker said.

Others have reportedly made the same mistake, prompting the department to post to its Facebook page Tuesday: “Just for clarification, this page is the Ottawa Police Department, in Ottawa, Putnam County, Ohio. We have been receiving calls, messages and comments from citizens in Canada. Our office wants to ensure your messages and concerns are heard by the correct agency.”

Tensions remain high in the Canadian capital, with Ottawa Police cracking down on the lingering demonstrators who are protesting against the country’s vaccine mandates.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson wrote to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Ontario Premier Doug Ford earlier this week to request 1,800 additional personnel to deal with the ongoing Freedom Convoy.

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