Boca Raton Police Release First 911 Calls Of Balloon Popping Incident Demonstrates Confusion And Panic

Deerfield-News.com-Deerfield Beach, Fl-From Boca Raton Police-The first fifteen 911 calls to report what they thought was an active shooting.

From Boca Raton Police-

Some of our citizens and media representatives have asked about video footage from the event at the Town Center mall on Sunday. We are providing two video segments involving balloons popping, close to the time when people thought they heard shots fired.

The first segment shows a janitor pushing a cart with a balloon stuck under the wheel. As the janitor pushes his cart out of view, he told investigators the balloon popped under the wheel.

As detectives continued to review surveillance video, additional footage showed juveniles popping a balloon at 2:58 p.m. inside the Hollister store near the food court. This is approximately two minutes after the balloon popped under the janitor’s wheel.

Our research found that this type of event is not uncommon. We’ve included a few links to stories about balloons from other areas.

9 Injured in Mall Stampede Over Popping Balloons at Joey Fatone-Owned Eatery
https://abcnews.go.com/…/injured-mall-stampede-poppi…/story…

University of Michigan sorority apologizes for active shooter scare
https://www.mlive.com/…/university-of-michigan-sorority-apo…

‘Shots fired’ at Carleton University actually just balloons popping
https://ottawacitizen.com/…/shots-fired-at-carleton-univers…

Edmonton researchers warn popping balloons as loud as gun blasts
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/…/edmonton…/article33846039/

We encourage you to always be prepared for a potential active shooter event. Be our eyes and ears to report suspicious activity. Have a plan to run, hide or fight, if needed.

Many sounds can be mistaken for gunfire or explosions, including popping balloons, slamming push bars on doors, items being dropped and more. If you do not perceive an immediate threat, make sure that you evacuate in a calm and controlled manner to avoid trampling other people and/or falling to the ground.

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