An 18-year-old Sammamish teen was arrested for allegedly perpetrating a hoax that caused the brief lockdown of four Issaquah schools.
Around 10 a.m. Wednesday morning, the teen, who attends Issaquah High School, told school staff and the school resource officer that he had seen a man with a gun in the upper parking lot of the school, Issaquah Police said in a news release.
Schools in the immediate area, including Issaquah High School and Tiger Mountain Community School, were placed on lockdown. Issaquah Middle School and Clark Elementary were placed on modified lockdown due to their proximity to the high school.
Additional Issaquah Police officers responded to assist with the investigation and to provide security for the schools.
Upon further questioning of the student, he admitted to making up the report. All schools resumed normal activities within a few minutes of the lockdown.
The student, a Sammamish resident, was arrested for false reporting and booked at the Issaquah Police Department.
The false report followed an unrelated incident Monday, in which a student at the school leading police to sweep the building after school with police dogs. No weapons were found, and authorities said they believe the bullets fell out of a student's pocket or backpack.
Issaquah School District spokeswoman Sara Niegowski praised the police department's quick response, saying "Issaquah Police are just awesome." She said that though incidents like this happen occasionally, the community is naturally more tuned into such events after the recent tragedy in Newtown.
"We would always err on the side of caution, but right now community awareness is heightened," she said.
The district sent information out right away about the lockdown via email and Twitter, in part to reassure parents, Niegowski said. The lockdown lasted only a few minutes, but since the initial report was of a possible gunman in the upper parking lot of the school, the other schools located on the same property were affected as well.
The case is under investigation by the Issaquah Police Department Detectives Division. If you have any questions about this case please contact Detective Sergeant Nash at (425) 837-3227.