Second Connecticut school goes into lockdown within one week: Greenwich High School receives threat of violence


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By Julia Rosier ’18

Greenwich High School located 22.6 miles south of Staples in Greenwich, Connecticut was on lockdown on March 29, 2017 due to a threat of violence against the school written on the girls’ bathroom wall. The school went into lockdown around noon which lasted nearly four hours, with no reported injuries.

Lieutenant Kraig Gray of the Greenwich Police Department (GPD) told The Greenwich Daily Voice, “pretty quickly it became a decision [that] had to be made and in the best interests of public safety as well as everybody that was here.”

School security was notified around noon about the threat being “specific to a time and location”

Maeve Markowitz, a senior at Greenwich High School stated that she was taking a test when during lunch when people came running into the room when the alarm went off. “My immediate thought was that it was a drill but then my teacher said he never got an email warning about a drill,” Markowitz said. “[The teacher] locked the door and put a chair in front of it.”

The Greenwich Police Department released a tweet at 12:55 p.m. stating, “Greenwich High School is in lockdown based upon a threat. Numerous officers are on the scene no one injured. Avoid the area during investigation.”

The GPD did not identify a suspect and no arrests have been made and officials stated that no other local schools were involved in the lockdown.

According to Greenwich Time, the Greenwich Police Department searched for weapons as students stayed inside classrooms and eventually patted down and searched each student individually.

“It seemed more real to me when my room was brought to the student center in a single file line and there were police officers with bulletproof vests and huge guns at every corner,” Markowitz said. “It was unsettling how quiet the huge room was and how every chair was flipped and people’s things were just abandoned.”

Last week, similar threats appeared at Darien High School, located in Darien, Connecticut. The school had a lockdown due to written threats found in the boys’ bathroom on March 24. Gray told the Greenwich Daily Voice that authorities did not make any connection with the incidents.

On Feb. 16, Staples High School performed a lockdown drill in order to be prepared for possible threatening situations. “It is scary to hear about these situations so close to Westport,” Zack Cooper ’18 said.

Jessie Parker ’18 participated in the lockdown drill in February. “I think it’s important for schools to practice lockdown drills especially because of events that happen close to Westport,” Parker said. “I think the lockdown drill is pretty efficient, I hope people really take it seriously.”

Markowitz stated that although her teacher was very relaxed throughout the lockdown, there were numerous other teachers who were visibly upset and more reactive towards the afternoon.

“There was plenty of cooperation amongst obviously the police department and the administrative staff here,” Gray said. “Students also did a great job […] and they did what they were supposed to do.”

 

Photo used under the Creative Commons License

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