Westfield State University Police: Man behind lockdown poses no threat

Investigation determined man was not wearing a bullet proof vest

WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – Westfield State University Police have determined the individual described by witnesses as suspicious, leading to a campus-wide lockdown Monday, poses no threat to the community.

According to a statement sent to students and staff by Chief of University Police Tony Casciano, a man turned himself in Monday night thinking he matched the description of the “suspicious” individual.

A University Police officer met with the original witness who then identified this individual through a photograph.

“This individual voluntarily contacted Westfield State University Police and subsequently reported to police headquarters while wearing all the gear as described by the witnesses, though it should be noted there was no bullet-proof vest, simply a vest,” Casciano said in the statement.

Lockdown lifted at Westfield State University

The campus was put in lockdown for nearly two hours after witnesses had reported seeing a “suspicious” man wearing a bulky, possibly bullet-proof vest, a black trench coat, black pants and a bulky backpack.


Casciano said they are confident it is in fact the individual observed by witnesses and that there is no threat.

“Westfield State University thanks all who came forward to provide information, including the witnesses and the individual in question, Casciano said. “We are grateful for the vigilance of our campus community, which helps to make the campus safe and secure.”