Evanston police are seeking to identify the person who placed a hoax call to the department Wednesday that triggered a massive police response on the Northwestern University campus.

Police Cmdr. Ryan Glew says that officers have located the person who the caller claimed to be as well as the woman he claimed he’d shot — and that neither of them were aware of the incident.

Police say the call apparently was placed from somewhere outside the immediate Chicago area. They’re asking anyone who may have information about the incident to contact the department’s Detective Bureau at 847-866-5040 or use the Text-A-Tip service by texting CRIMES (274637) and entering EPDTIP in the message line, followed by the tip information.  

The call, received about 2:17 p.m. led to a lockdown of the Northwestern campus and a lengthy police search of Engelhart Hall, the graduate student dorm at 1915 Maple Ave. where the caller claimed the shooting incident had taken place.

When police were able to enter the apartment that the caller had said he was in, they found it to be vacant, with no evidence that a crime had occurred there.

It was almost two hours before police were able to determine that the incident was a hoax and normal activity in the area could resume.

Related story

Police: NU shooting call was a hoax (3/14/18)

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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