Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Public safety

Tampa schools locked down after reports of shots fired nearby

TAMPA — Several schools were locked down for about 90 minutes Wednesday afternoon after reports of shots fired near Ferrell Middle Magnet School. No one was injured, but Tampa police searched Wednesday for two teenagers thought to have fired a gun into the air.

As school was letting out about 3 p.m. at Ferrell Middle, an all-girls school at 4302 N 24th St., a school resource officer heard gunshots.

The resource officer was directing traffic and saw two males on a bike, one pedaling and another on the handlebars, Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis said.

The resource officer and another officer in the area chased the teens but were unable to catch them.

Police set a perimeter around the area and searched for the teens, with support from K-9 units and helicopters, until about 4:40 p.m., when they located a gun not far from two sets of shell casings in the area of E Chelsea and N 26th streets, Davis said.

Middleton High and Lomax Elementary schools were also on lockdown during the search, while Potter Elementary, Lockhart Elementary and Young Middle schools were on modified lockdown, police said. Many students had already been dismissed before the lockdown started, Davis said. The gun and shell casings will be processed.

"Through the latent investigation, we hope to identify the shooter or shooters involved," Davis said.

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