An apparently small and peaceful 10,000-population town in Canada has hit the headlines after unprecedented gang violence prompted local officials to close down all schools, according to local newspaper Times Colonist.
The place Williams Lake, B.C., where town Mayor Walt Cobb told the Colonist he believes that a violent dispute between to small-time gangs may be responsible for the closures.
Cobb said four shots were fired at a home on Western Avenue at around 5:00 a.m. local time. This home is believed to belong to a 20-year-old man that was shot dead about a month ago, when violence in the small town began to escalate.
“It’s not really gangs, it’s a bunch of thugs,” he said. “They’re just punks is what they are. They’ve been allowed to get away with anything and they go to court, they get a slap on the wrist.”
The mayor added, that “No one is hurt, thank goodness. Someone is in custody now. They’re still surveilling the area because the indications are that there might have been more than one person involved.”
Authorities called on all residents to stay in their homes, while the local school district officials notified the population that school buses were not operating and that classes had been cancelled due to the ongoing incident.
Other businesses and transportation services are also affected by the incident.
The Williams Lake RCMP have yet to release information about the shooting.