East Bay News

Oakland elementary school spends day on lockdown

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Students at Horace Mann Elementary School spent much of Tuesday on lockdown as police searched an East Oakland neighborhood for several robbery suspects.

"It's dangerous because of the shootings and these little kids in school, you never know where a bullet going to fly," Aujunee Williams, whose niece attends Horace Mann, said.

Williams was worried because police were searching the neighborhood with guns drawn for suspects of a series of violent robberies.

"We had a series of very violent residential robberies; alert officers followed up on intelligence we had from prior violent crimes and located a suspect car in this neighborhood," Oakland Police Capt. Ersie Joyner said.

Their car was parked across the street from the house where the suspects had taken refuge. Police began negotiating while they took their positions in the area of Melrose and 49th avenues.

"In an attempt to gather the suspects' attention, was to fire less lethal beanbag rounds into the window, broke the windows in an attempt to get them to negotiations," Joyner said.

Eventually, the suspects came out one by one. Police at the door quickly cuffed them and led them to waiting vans.

The first two suspects came out before noon. Two others surrendered in the early afternoon. No shots were fired and the only injury was to a fifth suspect, who had to be removed by firefighters using power tools.

"He was stuck in the attic and was unable to come out of the attic and he was also suffering from a very minor injury, probably from a nail," Oakland Police Sgt. Chris Bolton said.

Police thought they had taken all the suspects into custody but later in the afternoon they discovered a stolen car which they thought may be linked to the suspects and they renewed their search efforts.

Meanwhile, family and friends were waiting in line to pick up their children. The students were supposed to be released around 2:45 p.m. but when school officials learned that Oakland police were still actively searching the area, the lockdown was reinstated until 4 p.m.

Marina Rivera has a first grader here. She summed up the feelings of the other parents.

"We should be more worried about our children growing up in Oakland instead of worrying about the violence; I really feel sorry for our children," Rivera said.

Shortly before 5 p.m., police told ABC7 they thought they had isolated two suspects in a home on Vicksburg Street.

(Copyright ©2014 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
crime, school lockdown, oakland, east bay news, vic lee
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