A white, ceremonial rifle used by a high school drill team in Simi Valley, California, led to a four-hour, campus-wide lockdown Wednesday.
A little after 8 a.m., police received a call about a female carrying a long gun at Royal High School. The caller said the weapon was either in a case or in some sort of wrapping.
Within minutes, the entire school was placed on lockdown and law enforcement was on the scene. The Simi Valley Police Department SWAT responded to the call, as well as the Los Angeles Police Department. The Ventura County Sheriff’s Office provided support via helicopter. Cmdr. Roy Jones of the Simi Valley Police Department said they also had crisis negotiators on the scene in case they were needed.
After a nearly four-hour exhaustive search, police gave the all clear.
“There was never an active shooter on the school campus and we didn’t recover any kind of weapon,” Jones said. “We believe the report came from someone who isn’t familiar with the drill team or its equipment.”
Nonetheless, Royal High School principal Keith Derrick said the lockdown went well.
“We worked with the police department and took our cues from them on what they needed us to do. We do lockdown drills all the time so that also helped,” Derrick said, thanking the police department for their “immediate response.”
This was the school’s second false alarm so far this academic year.