By Mike Irwin
The Wenatchee World
WENATCHEE — The BB gun that triggered a lockdown Friday of Confluence Health’s Wenatchee Valley Medical Center was set to be used for the first time to scare pigeons off the roof, Wenatchee Police Chief Tom Robbins said Wednesday.
Officers from local law enforcement agencies locked down the busy center around 4:30 p.m. Friday after a witness reported seeing a man with a rifle butt extending from under his coat. The incident ended after 90 minutes with no injuries or arrests.
Robbins said the BB gun was brought to the medical center by an employee of the facility’s maintenance department. Scaring away pigeons is not his primary job, said the chief, but pigeons had become a maintenance issue on the roof.
“It’s my understanding that they had not used the BB gun before, but thought it might be a way to scare the pigeons away from the area,” said Robbins.
The BB gun was carried by the employee to the medical center’s maintenance shop but had not yet been used, said Robbins. When the employee was eventually contacted, he was not on-site and had left the facility. A maintenance worker said the state Department of Fish and Wildlife had indicated the BB gun would be an acceptable way to deal with the pigeon problem, Robbins added.
A law officer and maintenance staffer located the BB gun and brought it to the incident command team for verification.