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Lego gun at work brings in the SWAT team

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Of all the things available for order on the Internet, it was a replica Lego gun that grabbed Jeremy Bell's attention.



The 29-year-old partner at teehan+lax, a downtown Toronto user-experience design firm, had ordered the gun from the online retailer BrickGun, which sells realistic Lego replicas of firearms. Just how realistic, Jeremy would soon find out in an encounter with the friendly neighbourhood SWAT team.

After receiving the Lego gun kit in the mail on Wednesday, he brought it to work to show his colleagues.

"I decided to put it together," Mr. Bell wrote on his blog yesterday. "I literally assembled it, handed it to a coworker (who promptly broke it) and then put it back in the box."

It was the end of the day so Mr. Bell and a few colleagues decided to wind down by playing a few rounds of the video game Modern Warfare 2 at the office before heading home. A little while later, sudden, intense yelling filled the office hallways.

"We originally thought there was some sort of domestic dispute out there ... that was until I clearly heard my name," said Mr. Bell.

"The guy sounded seriously angry and was instructing me to slowly come into the hall with my hands on my head."

It was Toronto's Emergency Task Force, more commonly known as the SWAT team, responding to calls of a man in an office with a gun.

"I was surrounded by about six SWAT guys armed with shotguns and assault rifles," he said. "Once they confirmed I wasn't packing any Lego heat, I walked backwards towards them, was then cuffed, pulled into the stairwell and thrown against the wall."

While two members of the SWAT team kept Mr. Bell pressed against the wall, he explained that there was a Lego gun in pieces in his office. Sure enough, a few minutes later, an officer confirmed it.

"We found it ... it's Lego," Mr. Bell recalled the officer saying, as the police promptly uncuffed him.

It turns out police were tipped off by a neighbour whose apartment looks in on Mr. Bell's office. Police say a call came in shortly after 5:30 p.m. with the caller reporting that a man was sitting in his office with a gun on his desk and the door closed (Mr. Bell had been on an earlier conference call so had closed the door).

"With calls like this you have to be safe, not sorry," said Const. Tony Vella, a Toronto police spokesman. "Until we know it's not a gun, we have to take it seriously."

Mr. Bell says he holds no grudges against the police, considering how real the toy gun looks.

"If there was someone in here with a gun I'd expect nothing less," he said. "However, it wasn't like I was walking around downtown with it. I didn't actually do anything with it."

Mr. Bell was released and faces no charges.

As for why he bought the toy gun in the first place, blame it on a love for Lego.

"I've always been a fan of Lego, so I decided to pick it up," Mr. Bell said. "I wish I had a decent reason for purchasing it, but I don't. For shame, I suppose."



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I was unaware Canada had a huge problem with people going postal -_-;

If I were that dude I'd be fucking suing somebody, including the voyeur watching my office.


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