TORONTO -- Canadian police said late Friday they had foiled a plot by two suspects who were planning to kill as many people as they could at a Halifax shopping mall on Valentine's Day before killing themselves.
Nova Scotia Royal Canadian Mounted Police Commanding Officer Brian Brennan said in a statement that when investigators learned of the plot Thursday morning, "we acted quickly and intercepted a threat."
"Information suggested that a 19-year-old Timberlea male and a 23-year old Geneva, Illinois, female had access to firearms and it was their intention to go to a public venue in the Halifax region on February 14th with a goal of opening fire to kill citizens, and then themselves," Brennan said.
"Had they been able to carry out their intentions the possibility for a large loss of life was definitely there," Brennan told reporters earlier Friday.
The suspects' names were not released. A senior police official told the Associated Press the suspects were on a chat stream and were apparently obsessed with killing and death and had many photos of mass killings.
The 19-year-old man was found dead by investigators at his parents' home in Timberlea, Nova Scotia,early Friday morning, Brennan said. The suspect apparently shot himself after police surrounded the house.
The American woman was arrested at Halifax's airport a short time later. The police official told the AP she confessed to the plot and had written a number of pronouncements to be posted on Twitter after her death.
A 20-year-old Halifax man and a 17-year-old from Cole Harbour were also in police custody as investigators determine their role in the scheme, Brennan said.
While the investigation continues, Brennan said, "We believe we have apprehended all known individuals in this matter and eliminated the threat. We are not seeking any further suspects at this time in relation to this investigation."