Police in Oshawa are looking for a masked man who threatened the life of an 11-year-old Muslim boy at a school, Canadian media reported Friday.
It is one of several anti-Muslim acts committed in the last two months, Global News television reported.
Durham Regional Police, Oshawa, said the man approached the Woodcrest Public School where students were playing on the grounds Thursday morning and shouted anti-Muslim remarks. He then walked to the Muslim boy and threatened the 11-year-old’s life.
The man, believed to be in his 30s, then fled the scene, Durham Regional News reported. Oshawa, located about 45 minutes east of Toronto, is a city of about 150,000 residents.
The student told school authorities about the incident and police were called.
Police issued a call Friday for the public’s help in locating the suspect.
“Investigators are appealing to witnesses with information regarding this investigation to come forward,” Durham Regional Police said on the department’s website.
A spokesman for the local school board, said the incident goes against the beliefs taught in school.
“We believe in and embrace equity, diversity and inclusive practises,” Terry Simzer said in a statement. “We do not tolerate or accept this type of behavior toward our students.
“The safety of our students remains our top priority and while this incident is certainly an isolated one that could have occurred any school in the Greater Toronto Area, we are taking extra precautions to ensure that our students are not subjected to threats of this nature, he added without specifying what precautions were taken.
The suspect was dressed all in black and hid his identity by wearing a ski mask, police said.
Police Constable George Tudos told Global the incident is one of at least six similar occurrences in the Durham Region since January, including three incidents in which anti-Muslim graffiti was painted at bus stops.
No one has been injured in any of the incidents.