Man With Gun Spotted At Anderson Elementary School Playground -

Man With Gun Spotted At Anderson Elementary School Playground

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Students escorted to buses by officers. Students escorted to buses by officers.

Police in Anderson are searching for a man they say was spotted at an elementary school playground Friday afternoon.

Authorities have set up a perimeter at Nevitt Forest Elementary School where the person was seen with a rifle and a backpack.

7 On Your Side's Kate Valentine is on the scene and says the school was placed on lock down and the kids were bused home.

Anderson police officers and Anderson County deputies, along with the help of K9 units are all searching for the suspect.

Keep checking back for updates on this developing story.

UPDATE MAY 24 6:00 P.M.

Tense moments for parents of students at Nevitt Forest Elementary School in Anderson today. Parents came to pick up students when school released  at 2:30 p.m. only to learn the school was on lock down.

Anderson Police say a staff member saw a man with a shotgun and backpack walking near the playground. The school was immediately put on lock down. Anderson District 5 says the school followed standard procedure.

There was no direct threat made to the school but anyone with a gun near a school is concerned an implied threat says Anderson Police Public Information Officer, Tony Tilley.

A perimeter was set up around the area and the man with the gun was tracked for two miles before law enforcement lost him, Tilley says.

The kids were escorted to buses and parent's cars around 3:15 when law enforcement were able to establish the school area was safe. Officers were seen high-fiving the kids as they boarded buses.

"I just thank God that the kids here are safe," says Cathryn Gaffney, a mother of one of the students.

Gaffney's son was on a school field trip and not scheduled to return to the school until later in the evening. Police were there to meet the bus and ensure all the student's safety.

"Me and another lady prayed and hope they catch the guy I don’t know what his purpose was or his state of mind or whatever but I just  hope that they catch him," Gaffney says.

Police are still searching for the man. They say they are looking for a black male in his early twenties wearing a gray shirt, and gray shorts carrying a shotgun and backpack.



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