LANCASTER – An ultimately unfounded report of a person with a gun at Lancaster High School prompted a lockdown and search of the campus Wednesday at roughly the same time similar bogus reports were made to at least two other California high schools.
Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies responded to Lancaster High School at 32nd Street West and Avenue J shortly before 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 14, after the department received a call regarding a person with a gun at the campus. Sheriff’s officials said it was unclear if the call came from the school.
Deputies swarmed the campus and conducted a room-by-room and building-by-building search while the school was placed on lockdown. By about 2 p.m., the search was concluded and “no evidence of an active shooter” was found, according to the sheriff’s department. No injuries were reported. Students were being held at the school as of mid-afternoon, but parents were told to pick up their children at nearby Central Christian Church.
An investigation was continuing. The telephone report of a gunman on the campus occurred nearly simultaneously with similar reports that led to lockdowns at two other schools — Mater Dei Catholic High School in Chula Vista in San Diego County and Bishop Diego High School in Santa Barbara. Both of those campuses were also searched, with no evidence of a gunman or shooting.
There was no immediate word on whether the reports were related. Santa Barbara police said the “false report is under investigation” at Bishop Diego High. The Chula Vista Police Department reported that the call reporting an active shooter at Mater Dei was quickly determined to be a hoax.
“We are receiving reports of similar calls in other jurisdictions and will be putting out more info about this hoax,” Chula Vista police said.
On Tuesday morning, a similar “hoax” occurred at Hollywood High School, where police responded to a report of a possibly armed suspect and shots fired on the campus. That school was also locked down and searched, with no evidence of a crime found.