'Mental health' questioned after man tries to smuggle meat cleaver into Parliament
Published Wednesday, November 18, 2015 12:28PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, November 18, 2015 4:57PM EST
A Canadian permanent resident with a documented “history of odd behaviour” has been charged after security officers found him with a concealed knife as he was trying to enter the Parliament Buildings.
Members of the Parliamentary Protective Service arrested the 56-year-old man outside Centre Block in Ottawa on Tuesday, after finding the weapon “during the security screening process,” an RCMP spokesperson said in an email to CTV News.
A source told CTV News that the knife found under the man’s coat was a meat cleaver with a 15-centimetre blade.
RCMP Commissioner Bob Paulson later said the incident does not appear to have been politically motivated or related to terrorism, but was instead most likely the result of “a mental health issue.”
“We’ll see more details as we go along,” Paulson told reporters in Ottawa during a briefing on the current security threat to Canada.
“The best information I have right now is that it’s just a sort of mental health, bad judgment, crazy behaviour issue,” he added.
Paulson said the man has a “history of behaviours that are odd,” and that he was known to RCMP in the sense that there, “was a history of similar behaviour but not in a counter-terrorism context.”
Paulson commended his officers for their doing “exactly” what they are expected to do.
Yasin Mohamed Ali, 56, is facing one charge of carrying a concealed weapon.
The Toronto-area resident made a brief court appearance Wednesday and was remanded into custody until Friday.
With files from The Canadian Press