BUCKHANNON — After reports of a “loud bang” sent Buckhannon-Upshur High School on lockdown Friday afternoon, local law enforcement sprung into action to quickly investigate.
According to Chief Deputy Mike Coffman with the Upshur County Sheriff’s Department, the call for help came in at 2:08 p.m. UCSD and the Buckhannon Detachment of the West Virginia State Police responded to B-UHS and conducted a thorough search of the building and grounds, but the cause of the sound that some initially thought was gunfire remains undetermined.
“The school was put on lockdown as a precaution and everything was searched inside and out, but we didn’t find anything out of the ordinary,” Chief Deputy Coffman told The Record Delta. The officer said gunshots were ruled out and speculation of fireworks being discharged at the school could not be confirmed either, as they did not find any evidence or remnants to suggest that was the cause. He added, “It was definitely loud and out of the ordinary, but it was unclear what it was, and we did not see any evidence of anything.”
Buckhannon Police Department was reportedly en route to assist, but that was canceled once officers on scene determined there was no threat. Students remained in classrooms while a security sweep was completed, according to Upshur County Schools Superintendent Dr. Sara Lewis-Stankus. She said school administration and law enforcement responded quickly and determined the building and premises were secure, then students were released back to their regular schedules omce the lockdown was lifted.
Dr. Lewis-Stankus emphasized, “The safety of our staff and students is our top priority. We would like to thank local law enforcement for their quick response to our concerns today.”