Newport News, Va. – Sandford Elementary School in Newport News was briefly locked down Friday morning after a man reportedly ran through the school hallways screaming.
Police responded to the incident at 11:11 am and school administrators immediately put the school on lockdown while students, faculty and staff were accounted for.
There were no injuries reported and there were no reports of the man attempting to assault or approach anyone in a menacing manner.
The lockdown was lifted about 11:45 am.
Police are checking the area around the school in an attempt to locate the man, who is described as black male in his 40s wearing an orange shirt.
“That is kind of scary, you know running up and down the hallway. You don’t know if they are there to harm the kids with all the stuff going on in the schools and everything like that. It kind of puts a lot of things into perspective about securing the school and stuff like that,” says Misty Etheridge, a parent.
Police say the man left the school through the same door he used to enter the building.
Workers tell NewsChannel 3 that the door stays open during the day but now parents want that changed after what happened on Friday.
“But to know that anybody can enter the school and go crazy like that kind of makes you a little worried for the safety of all the children,” says Etheridge.
“I’m scared, I mean, what can I do? Can they do something to keep people from going in there and just running around and being crazy? That’s crazy,” says Chris Patterson, a parent.
School administrators called parents to let them know what happened and some parents decided to pick their children up immediately.
School workers told NewsChannel 3 they are looking into installing a doorbell and a security camera so they can keep all the doors locked while the little ones are inside.