Oxnard High School officials called police and briefly went into lockdown Wednesday afternoon after a male student allegedly sent a photo of a gun to another student.
The short lockdown impacted the end of the school day, when students are usually released at 3:35 p.m.
In a tweet sent around 3:38 p.m., Principal Richard Urias wrote the school was in a level 1 lockdown — meaning there was a possible intruder on campus — out of “an abundance of caution.”
Police had arrived to clear campus, he wrote, adding students wouldn’t be dismissed until school officials “know it is safe.”
The lockdown was lifted around 3:45 p.m. after a 17-year-old male student had been arrested off campus.
The incident initially came to police attention around 2:30 p.m. from the school resource officer, said Oxnard Police Department Cmdr. Luis McArthur.
The suspect and a female student had reportedly been having a discussion in the school library that turned into a disagreement, McArthur said. The male student apparently became upset and left, then later sent the girl a message through social media with a photo of a gun.
The school resource officer, working with school administrators, thought the photo may have been sent from campus and there was possibly a student at school with a gun, McArthur said.
The message apparently did not contain threats to the school or the female student. Rather, it implied the gun would be “waiting for” the boyfriend of the female student, McArthur said. The suspect and the female student had reportedly dated at one point for a brief period, he said, calling it a matter of days.
Police found the student on Channel Islands Boulevard and Manzanita Drive. He was arrested on suspicion of making criminal threats, a felony. He was to be lodged at the county juvenile hall facility.
Police searched the suspect’s home and vehicle, McArthur said. Officers eventually found the weapon, which they determined was a BB gun.
Oxnard Union High School District officials said extra police would be present on and around the high school Thursday as a precautionary measure.
The campus at 3400 W. Gonzales Road serves about 2,800 students in grades 9-12.
Last week, police in Oxnard and Camarillo investigated reported threats of school violence that caused alarm in the wake of the elementary school shooting in Uvalde, Texas that killed 19 students and two teachers. No credible threats were found.
— Staff writer Cytlalli Salgado contributed to this report.
This story may be updated.
Isaiah Murtaugh covers education for the Ventura County Star. He can be reached at [email protected]
This article originally appeared on Ventura County Star: Oxnard High School locked down Wednesday afternoon