Breckenridge Texan

Incident in downtown Breckenridge leads to brief lockdown at high school, junior high

Incident in downtown Breckenridge leads to brief lockdown at high school, junior high
November 01
20:34 2022

By Tony Pilkington and Carla McKeown/Breckenridge Texan

An incident in Breckenridge this morning, Tuesday, Nov. 1, resulted in Breckenridge High School and Junior High School going into lockdown for a few minutes. However, Breckenridge Police Chief Bacel Cantrell said there was no actual threat to the schools, students or staff.

According to Cantrell, the BPD’s dispatch received a call shortly after 10 a.m. that there was a person with a gun who was experiencing a mental health issue in the 300 block of West Walker Street.

“By the time we arrived, he’d already left the premises,” the police chief said. “One of the deputies thought they spotted him headed north, so we set up a tight perimeter with the sheriff’s office. … Luckily, all the sheriff’s office and constable just happened to be over near the Courthouse, and so setting up that perimeter was almost instant.”

Two officers went to the school, and the Breckenridge Independent School District superintendent was contacted and informed about the situation. At that time, the school district enacted their precautions for the schools in the area.

“I got a call from Chief Cantrell at 10:16, advising that there was a dangerous situation in the area and we needed to take procedures,” BISD Superintendent Bryan Allen said. “So we locked down both campuses (BHS and BJHS). … Everything went off just the way we trained. And then, four minutes later, at 10:20, Chief Cantrell called back and said … all was clear, so we released the lockdown at that time.”

Cantrell explained that shortly after he contacted the superintendent, officers located the person, who wasn’t armed at that time.

“He had left the gun at the original location,” Cantrell said. “There was no threat toward the school or faculty or anything like that, and we were still two blocks from the school. And we had a tight perimeter (set up) … within a block area, half a block, of where he was at. But, you know, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.”

Cantrell emphasized that there was never any direct threat to anyone at the schools and that there was no one else involved.

After he was located by officials, the man involved in the situation was taken to the police department. “We got him evaluated and got him some help,” Cantrell said.

Allen said the incident revealed that the schools are prepared to deal with an emergency. “I can’t be more proud of our people,” he said. “Everybody handled themselves well. Nobody panicked. Everybody followed the procedure to a T. … I hate to have a live drill like that, but it was good to see that we could respond to things in a productive way when it was not planned. I hate that the situation happened, and I hate that we had to do it. But … it was good for us to kind of have a situation to respond to that we didn’t know was coming. And our results were through the roof.”

Parents were notified of the situation through ParentSquare, a messaging platform that allows the school district to send messages directly to parents regarding school activities, and the BPD issued a statement on their Facebook page.

(File photo)


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