Police: No danger at school, hospital

Published 11:32 am Friday, November 21, 2014

Unfounded rumors led to brief lockdowns at local school and hospital Friday morning, Troy Police said.

Pike Liberal Arts School and Troy Regional Medical Center placed their campuses on lockdown around 10 a.m. Friday in response to false reports of an armed individual in the area.

“The reports were unfounded,” said Lt. Bryan Weed, public information officer for the Troy Police Department. “There were no incidents at the school or at the hospital.”

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Teresa Grimes, CEO Troy Regional Medical Center, said the hospital “went on lockdown Friday, Nov. 21, as a precautionary measure until an alleged potential threat near the TRMC campus could be investigated.”

The facility remained on lockdown for about 40 minutes. As of 11:20 a.m., the facility was “all clear and operating as usual.”

Weed said police responded Friday morning to a call from a concerned employee at Troy Regional Medical Center, which is adjacent to the school. The employee had received information that an armed man was on the Pike Lib campus. Police responded and during the investigation discovered a chain of misinformation. “It turns out that one parent had texted another and another sent a message to another parent and it was just a rumor mill,” he said.

Meanwhile, parents at the school had received communications that an armed individual was on the hospital campus, so in an effort to protect the students officials reportedly put the school in lockdown until information could be clarified with the authorities. “We talked with the headmaster and there was nothing going on at the school,” Weed said.

The rumors appear to have stemmed from concern over a personnel action taken at the hospital earlier in the week. “They had released an employee and, to my knowledge, he made no threats at that time and made no threats (today),” Weed said. “Unfortunately, it was just a bunch of rumors that got out of control.”