Police thwart suspected plot to attack Pokemon World Championships – Metro US

Police thwart suspected plot to attack Pokemon World Championships

Police thwart suspected plot to attack Pokemon World Championships
BPD News

Police arrested two men and seized two firearmsFriday, thwarting what authorities called a possible attack at the Pokemon World Championships in Boston.

The suspects, Kevin Norton, 18, and James Stumbo, 27, both of Iowa, were being held Sunday on weapons charges.

Convention center personnel notified police about threats of violence made via social media, according to a release.

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Pokemon leadership forwarded information about the threats to authorities after receiving tips from players, the company said in a statement.

“Prior to the event this weekend, our community of players made us aware of a security issue.We gathered information and gave it as soon as possible to the authorities,” the statement reads. “Due to quick action, the potential threat was resolved.”

Attendees were not notified about the threats or Friday’s arrest before Sunday, according to Rachel Weiss, spokesperson for the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority. Fox 25 Boston first reported the story Sunday afternoon.

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Detectives with the Boston Regional Intelligence Center received the tip Thursday that two men were driving from Iowa with several firearms in their vehicle, according to police.

The two male suspects were stopped, also on Thursday, while attempting to enter the event, police said. In the car they were driving, authorities later found a 12-guage Remington shotgun, a DPM5 Model AR-15 rifle and several hundred rounds of ammunition, as well as a hunting knife, according to a police.

A Facebook user with Stumbo’s name posted a picture of two weapons online Wednesday, Aug. 19.

The two male suspects were stopped Thursday while attempting to enter the event, then released pending a search warrant, police said. Police arrested the suspects in a Saugus hotel on Friday, according to a report.

The suspects were scheduled to be arraigned in Boston Municipal Court.

Two men with Stumbo and Norton's names were on a list of players who qualified to participate in the invitation-only competition. To qualify, competitors had to rack up points at other competitions held year-round.

The event kicked off Friday night at the Hynes Convention Center, with events planned through Sunday night. Thousands attended the event, a significant portion of them children. The tournament was broadcast live and organizers expected it to draw thousands of viewers online.

Security personnel Sunday were checking backpacks at the Boylston Street entrance to the venue.

The arrests may have prevented “a potential tragedy,” said Paul Fitzgerald, commander superintendent of the Boston Police Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Analysis.

"The relationship between police and private sector security is important in both our community policing philosophy, as well as our counter-terrorism strategy,” Fitzgerald said in a statement. “This incident is a good example of private security reaching out to their local Boston police district and relaying information to detectives and BRIC analysts in order to identify the very real threat. The BPD detectives did a great job in the stop and prevention of a potential tragedy."