Police charge Amber Alert complainer, 70, with mischief

TORONTO — A 70-year-old man is facing a mischief charge after he called 911 to “purposely tie up emergency lines” after an Amber Alert was issued to help find five missing children in Ontario.

Hamilton police arrested and charged Douglas Bagshaw with mischief, according to a statement released Thursday. They said he called around 5 p.m. on Tuesday to say he was upset about the alert because he was trying to rest.

“He did not have an emergency and was calling 911 to purposely tie up emergency lines,” stated the press release.

He also told police he would continue to call and complain about the ongoing alert.

Bagshaw was released and will appear in court on Oct. 15. 

The children were found safe on Wednesday, Niagara region police said.

Previous Amber Alerts issued this year have also attracted complaints from the public.

On Tuesday, Toronto police asked the public to show compassion and understanding when they receive the alerts, rather than frustration.

“Please do not call police to complain, instead find compassion and have the understanding to help locate these children! Amber Alerts are issued for a reason,” Alex Li, media relations officer with Toronto police, tweeted.