Police: No credible threat after shell casing found on RIC campus

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RIC students, staff notified of shell casing found on campus

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — State Police Colonel James Manni said there is no credible threat after a spent 9-millimeter round was found on the Rhode Island College campus on Thursday morning.

The empty shell casing was found one day after another 9-millimeter spent round was found on the CCRI campus in Warwick, prompting an evacuation.

In a letter to the campus community, RIC President Frank Sánchez said a student found the casing while exiting her vehicle near the parking lot adjacent to C Lot and Alger and Whipple Halls.

According to the police report obtained by Eyewitness News, Providence police seized the 9mm brass shell casing as part of their investigation. Col. Hugh Clements said the round was sent to the state crime lab to be analyzed.

On Wednesday, the bullet casing found in the main building of CCRI in Warwick sparked a campus-wide evacuation and large police response.

But police determined there was no need to evacuate the RIC campus on Thursday, after securing the parking lot and determining no shots had been fired and there was no threat.

RIC spokesperson John Taraborelli said the main reason for the decision to not evacuate was because the shell casing was found outside, as opposed to inside a school building. 

He said police patrols were stepped up on campus during the day, where final exams were taking place and an elementary school on campus opened for the day shortly after the shell casing was found at 7:10 a.m.

Clements said he fully agreed with RIC’s decision. An investigation is underway into how the shell casing got in the parking lot.

Manni said the state’s fusion center, which collects and disseminates information from multiple jurisdictions including federal law enforcement, is involved in the investigation.

Police are looking into both the RIC and CCRI incidents, plus another case of a live .45 caliber round found on a school bus in Burrillville last week. 

Among the questions, Manni said police want to answer: “Were the three separate incidents a coincidence? Were they connected? Was it a hoax? And if we can locate the person or persons that left these rounds, was there intent to instill fear in the public?”

The investigation is ongoing, and anyone with information is encouraged to call the RI State Police.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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