Deputies continue increased patrols at Pitt County schools Frid - WSPA.com

Deputies continue increased patrols at Pitt County schools Friday

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GREENVILLE, N.C. - Pitt County students will see more security at their schools on Thursday and Friday.

The Pitt County Sheriff's Office is placing extra deputies on campuses after D.H. Conley High School went on lockdown after someone fired shots near the school.

"They need not come to any schools in Pitt County because we're going to be around," Lt. Kip Gaskins of the Pitt County Sheriff's Office said. "We have a place for them to stay, and it's called the Pitt County Detention Center."

Lt. Gaskins said the increased patrols have been received warmly by teachers and students.

"Make sure they know that we're behind them," Lt. Gaskins said. "We're going to protect them and do everything we can to keep the kids safe."
     
Deputies located 3 shell casings across from D.H. Conley. Investigators say the incident took place near the school but are still searching for those responsible. 

For about 20 minutes, administrators put D.H. Conley high school under wraps. Around 1:20 p.m. Wednesday, students say they heard gunshots from inside.

“All of a sudden, I heard a couple shots and then all the teachers were running out of the office and screaming and telling us to go back and we were in lockdown,” said Storm Davis, student.

Deputies say when they got to the scene, they found 3 shell casings. Witnesses say it came from a car driving near the intersection of Tull and Worthington roads.

"I heard and she also heard 5 shots,” said Jerry, who lives nearby. “Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, right? Consecutive shots."

Coincidently, the school practiced a lockdown earlier in the day, which parents were notified about. Students say they thought this incident was part of the drill.

"I heard fire, I heard fight, I heard gunman, I heard knife man, I heard Spider-man I heard everything,” a student told 9 On Your Side. “And then, we had one this morning, so I thought, maybe, it's just another practice."

But it was no practice. Deputies canvassed the scene, looking for the suspects witnesses described.

"Witnesses say a gold colored Suburban model headed in the way of Worthington's Crossing, believed to be occupied by two subjects," said Sheriff Neil Elks, Pitt County.

Deputies found two males in Winterville matching the description and were taken in for questioning and have since been released. The Sheriff's Office spokeswoman says there was "not enough to hold them."

The Sheriff's Office promises to get to the bottom of the incident.

"The sheriff has devoted all available resources at this time, although the information is still limited and under investigation,” said Sgt. Cameron Coburn, Pitt County Sheriff's Office. “We will devote whatever time that needs to be until the matter is resolved."

If you have any information you are urged to call Crime Stopper at 758-7777.
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