Wanted man behind school lockdowns still on run

UPDATE: A wanted man who sent three Glenvale schools into lockdown remains at large in Toowoomba.

The man is known to police who are continuing their investigations into the matter.

Toowoomba Criminal Investigation Branch officer-in-charge Paul McCusker said the large-scale manhunt across parts of Glenvale Thursday morning was triggered by a vehicle that evaded officers.

The Queensland Police Service's policy is to not pursue vehicles that fail to stop.

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Detective Senior Sergeant McCusker said officers abided by that rule during the Thursday incident.

"Police attempted to intercept a vehicle but it failed to stop and police did not pursue the vehicle," he said.

"Police then received information of a car having crashed on a very sharp bend and the man left the area."

Det. Snr Sgt McCusker said police responding to reports of crime in the community relied on the information being relayed to officers.

Police at the scene of the crash that sparked a major manhunt.
Police at the scene of the crash that sparked a major manhunt. Nev Madsen

"When crimes are reported and when police need to locate a person, they use all the resources available to ensure those persons are put before the courts and to make sure the community is safe," he said.

"Police are trained to act in those situations and there is a command structure in place in the field as well as throughout the communications unit.

"That command structure then dictates what occurs on the ground and what resources are used.

"Police have a number of resources open to us and all those resources will be used."

Det. Snr Sgt McCusker said three large-scale manhunts in Toowoomba in nine days had not drained police resources with systems in place to ensure the community was kept safe.

"Police will still respond to tasks at the time and resources are spread among areas," he said.

"There was no drain on any other police calls to the service at the time.

"We will still allocate officers to calls. During high incident events, other jobs are detailed out accordingly."

A large-scale manhunt on Tuesday last week ended in the arrest of a 15-year-old boy after more than four hours.

A seven-hour manhunt last Wednesday night ended in a 27-year-old man being arrested and charged with a string of alleged offences following a reported shop steal at Bridge St.

Thursday's exhaustive search sent three schools into lockdown with the wanted man remaining at large in Toowoomba.

Police searching for the suspect in Glenvale yesterday.
Police searching for the suspect in Glenvale yesterday.

FRIDAY 6.10AM: Toowoomba police are yet to locate a man who was the subject of a major police chase yesterday.

Detective Senior Sergeant Paul McCusker said police were aware of the identity of the man and were conducting further inquiries to locate him.

Snr Sgt McCusker said police did not think the man was armed.

The search started about 11am yesterday when officers attempted to intercept a vehicle on South St but it failed to stop.

Glenvale Christian School, Darling Downs Christian School and Glenvale State School went into lockdown on the advice of police, but reopened by 2pm yesterday.

THURSDAY 5.17PM: What should have been a simple vehicle intercept spiralled into a major incident when a man fled from police.

The actions of a man wanted by police locked down three schools and left a community concerned for their children.

It's the second time in nine days that the Garden City has been locked down as police hunt an armed offender.

The incident started about 11am after a man fled from officers trying to intercept a vehicle.

The driver - a man, believed to have been armed - crashed the vehicle at the intersection of McDougall and South Sts.

What followed was a large scale manhunt involving uniform and plain clothes officers, specialist police and the police dog squad.

Glenvale Christian School, Darling Downs Christian School and Glenvale State School put the safety of their students first, locking down the schools on the advice of police.

Glenvale State School principal David Saxton said students were locked in classrooms as soon as police advised of the investigation about 11.25am.

Two notifications were sent to parents regarding the incident.

"The students' safety is our utmost priority and all steps were taken to ensure the students were safe today," Mr Saxton said.

"The students and staff are to be commended on the responsible and effective manner in which they managed a very unusual occurrence at the school."

Mr Saxton said any children upset or troubled by the incident would be offered support through the school.

The crash that started a police chase in Glenvale.
The crash that started a police chase in Glenvale.

The lockdown at all three schools was lifted shortly before 2pm.

Today's incident followed the dramatic chase last week which sent Darling Heights into lockdown as police searched for a teenager on the run from authorities.

That incident started in the Upper Lockyer when a 15-year-old boy carjacked a good Samaritan after crashing a vehicle last Tuesday afternoon.

The boy fled the area and was tracked to Darling Heights by the police helicopter PolAir.

He was arrested in Wilsonton that night, but not before leading police on a manhunt that lasted more than five hours.

2PM: The lockdown on three Glenvale schools has been lifted as the search for a man on the run from police continues.

Multiple police units, including specialist police, are currently searching for the man.

The man is described as being Caucasian in appearance, about 183cm tall with a solid build and facial hair.

He was last seen wearing dark blue shorts with a white strip and a dark blue shirt.

Anyone who sees the man is urged to contact 000 but not to approach the man.

The search started about 11am when officers attempted to intercept a vehicle on South St but it failed to stop.

1.45PM: A third school is in lockdown as police chase a suspected gunman on the run in the Glenvale area.

Glenvale Christian School, Darling Downs Christian School and Glenvale State School have all been put into lockdown.

The police dog squad is attempting the locate the man who ran from police after crashing his car near the intersection of McDougall and South Sts.

1.15PM: The Chronicle reporter Kate Dodd is part of the lockdown at the Darling Downs Christian School.

She was on another job when the school was put into lockdown at about 11am today after a suspected gunman ran from a crash site in Glenvale.

Police have locked down several streets in the area as they attempt to track down the offender. 

Cars travelling in the area are being searched.

Reporting from the principal's office Ms Dodd said they'd shut all the doors and had been told to stay inside.

She said the atmosphere was calm.

"We haven't heard much information other than they said there was a drug-addled guy wandering around.

"We can't see any police.

"There's no panicking."

11.15AM: A suspected gunman is on the run from police after crashing the car he was driving in Glenvale, Toowoomba.

Police were tracking the vehicle for several hours throughout Glenvale before the crash occurred.

Darling Downs Christian School and Glenvale State School have been put into lockdown.

The driver of the vehicle has fled on foot. Police have concerns he is carrying a firearm.

The crash has occurred near the intersection of South and Boundary Sts.

Several streets have been closed as police chase the suspected gunman.

The police dog squad has been called.



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