School lockdown suspect was youngster playing with toy gun
Post Independent Editor
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Police confirmed Wednesday that the sighting of a suspicious person that prompted a one-hour lockdown of Glenwood Springs Middle School Tuesday was a youngster playing with an “air soft” toy gun.
“There was no gunman running loose,” said Glenwood Springs Police Lt. Bill Kimminau. “We erred on the side of caution, but kids were never in any danger.”
The school was locked down from 3:40 to 5 p.m. on Tuesday, after normal school hours and during the time when after-school classes and sports were going on for about 100 students.
The lockdown occurred after a woman driving by the school spotted a person with a possible weapon. She immediately reported it to school officials, who worked with a police officer teaching the building to lock down the building within one minute.
Officers interviewed the woman Tuesday afternoon, but could not locate the youngster until Wednesday.
“We got information Wednesday morning about the kid from somebody who didn’t report it Tuesday,” Kimminau said.
Officers located the boy, who lives a block away from the school, and interviewed him and his parents on Wednesday morning. Kimminau said police are confident the youngster is who the woman saw on Tuesday afternoon.
“He wasn’t doing anything wrong, he was just in wrong place at wrong time,” Kimminau said. “Unfortunately these toy guns look like real guns.”
Air soft guns are modeled to look like real military-style rifles, and shoot plastic pellets from a spring- or compressor-powered chamber. They are often used for military training as well as for recreation.
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Interstate 70 through Glenwood Canyon closed around 9 p.m. Thursday for a flash flood warning.