What started out as a fun day dedicated to all things “Star Wars,” took a chaotic turn Saturday when a man carrying a toy gun prompted a large police response.
The incident was reported at 12:15 p.m. during “Star Wars Reads Day” at the Silver Lake Branch of the Los Angeles Public Library.
The event at the library, located at 2411 Glendale Blvd., drew children, teens, adults and seniors, a witness told Deadline.
Some of the people attending were dressed in “Star Wars”-themed costumes and carried light sabers. But when a man dressed in a Stormtrooper outfit arrived with a toy gun, some attendees thought the weapon was real and notified authorities.
“We had five units and a supervisor respond,” an LAPD spokesman told Deadline Saturday night. The spokesman added that a helicopter airship was called in to patrol the area from overhead.
Officers ordered the man in the costume to drop the weapon and he was apprehended without incident.
“He was taken into custody, but it was later determined that the weapon was a toy,” the LAPD spokesman said.
Cell phone video posted on citizen.com, which allows residents to share information about crime in their communities, showed several LAPD squad cars parked outside the library. The website said police were “having difficulty taking the man into custody due to the bulkiness” of his costume.
The library had no comment and referred Deadline to its headquarters, which was closed for the weekend.
According to the library’s website, “Star Wars Reads Day” took place this afternoon from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and included crafts, movies, music, special guests, snacks and giveaways.
Deadline editor Bruce Haring contributed to this report.
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