Phoenix police spokesman, Sgt. Alan Pfohl describes an incident on April 28, 2017, in which a man was detained after witnesses reported seeing him with a replica rifle and pellet gun in an area near Bostrom High School.
Police say they have detained a man who had been pointing a pellet rifle at people near Bostrom High School in Phoenix before the start of classes Friday morning.
The man, identified as Jimmy O’Neal, 58, was found to be carrying two pellet rifles when he was detained; one resembled a high-powered rifle, police said.
He was arrested on suspicion of trespassing and disorderly conduct, police said.
Police first began receiving calls at 6:40 a.m. about a man with a rifle walking in the area of 27th Avenue and Osborn Road and “pointing it at things and people,” Pfohl said. No injuries were reported.
The Phoenix Union High School District posted a notice on Facebook at about 7 a.m. instructing students and staff about a lockdown at the alternative high school because of police activity and instructed them to report to Metro Tech High School near 19th Avenue and Thomas Road.
Officers cordoned off the area to conduct a search and found a man matching the description given by witnesses, Pfohl said. They quickly determined the “rifle” he carried was a decoy and wouldn’t have hurt anyone, Pfohl said.
“What is really great about this, is the officers worked very quickly to get the area contained,” Pfohl said, adding that Phoenix police used a reverse 911 system to alert residents in the area of “what was going on and to stay in the houses.”
School officials arranged for buses to pick up Bostrom High School students from Metro Tech and drive them to their own campus once O’Neal was detained.
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