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Two unidentified males allegedly threatened two Harvard maintenance workers in a confrontation Sunday night between 10 and 20 DeWolfe St., police said.
At 11:20 p.m., Harvard University Police Department (HUPD) officers responded to a report that Griffin Gibson and Edward Foye, two Facilities Maintenance Operations (FMO) workers, were accosted by a person with a gun, according to HUPD spokesperson Steven G. Catalano.
After the incident, Gibson told The Crimson that a small car containing two men had sped down DeWolfe Street and hit Foye in the hand.
Catalano said the impact caused Foye’s his keys to fly out of his hand. The suspects stopped the car, jumped out and approached the victims.
Gibson said one of the suspects had his hand in his pocket as if he was hiding a gun, and the suspect proceeded to threaten and chase the two workers, who told police the incident was unprovoked.
“At no point in time did the employee instigate or act in an aggressive manner at all,” Catalano said.
Witness Daniel A. Dunay ’06 said he observed the incident from the stoop of 20 DeWolfe St., where he stood chatting with a friend.
“[The suspects] were wearing baggy clothing and came out of both sides of the car,” Dunay said. “They ran back up DeWolfe Street shouting ‘what was that’ and ‘what are you doing’ using aggressive language....I know we did not see a gun, but I can’t rule it out conclusively.”
Dunay added he thought the suspects were in their early to mid 20s.
No weapon was ever actually shown to the victims or any officers, Catalano said, and neither victim sustained serious physical injuries.
He said after the confrontation one of the suspects fled in the car while the other ran away on foot, and HUPD officers tried to follow the suspect on foot.
“We didn’t confiscate the gun nor did we catch the suspect in pursuit,” Catalano said. “We did do an exhaustive search of the area.”Officers were seen pulling a hat out of the bushes by 20 DeWolfe St.
Catalano said HUPD was not prepared to release a detailed description of the suspects because of vague descriptions from the victims.
“We couldn’t determine their identity,” he said. “The investigation is ongoing.”
Following the incident, several police cars from both HUPD and the Cambridge Police Department lined DeWolfe, Mill and Grant Streets flashing their lights while officers on foot ran towards the scene from all directions. Dozens of curious students were drawn out of their dorms, but officers instructed everyone to leave the scene for safety reasons.
“It was labeled as a gun call although no one ever saw one,” Catalano said. “About four to five units responded, possibly all the ones from this side of the river.”
Daniel S. Anderson ’06 said he was walking by Leverett Dining Hall with a group of friends when he saw at least 25 students were gathered around the scene. He added that officers were instructing everyone to go inside for safety and watch out for suspicious characters in the area.
“An officer was speaking loudly to a group of people and telling them to go inside,” Anderson said. “I’m pretty sure he had his gun out...[The officers] were taking it really, really seriously.”
FMO representatives declined to comment further yesterday.
—Staff writer Hana R. Alberts can be reached at email@example.com.
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