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'Misunderstanding' Leads to UDHS Lockdown

A student miming a gun with an umbrella briefly causes a panic.

Upper Dublin High School was placed under lockdown during first period classes Monday morning following a report of a possibly armed subject at the school.

Upper Dublin Police said four male students were being held for questioning by detectives after they were seen in a hallway on school security cameras with what appeared to be a "long gun" slung over one of their shoulders.

Upper Dublin School District Superintendent Michael Pladus told parents in an email message that a "suspicious incident" had turned out to be "a student with an umbrella."

A police officer at the scene told Patch that one of the students at the school had been holding an umbrella in a gun-like manner and had been pretending to "shoot" it.

An Upper Dublin Police Department representative said by telephone that the incident was a "misunderstanding" and that students were never in danger.

Upper Dublin Police Chief Terry Thompson said the incident had been the result of "some kids in the wrong place, at the wrong time, on the wrong day." No weapons were involved, Thompson said.

Police said the students' actions were "part of a school project to simulate the human immune system protecting the body."

A number of visibly upset parents had gathered near one of the doors of the school by 9:25 a.m. A school administrator was directing parents who wanted to sign their children out of school to the school's main office, and a number of parents were doing so. 

Some parents received worried calls from friends and family members who saw the police presence at the school, while other heard about the incident on the news.

Upper Dublin High School Sophomore Justin Asaraf was in gym class when the school was locked down.

He said that his teacher instructed his class to hide in the locker room, where they stayed for roughly 30 minutes.

Another student who was in the gym when the lockdown was broadcast over the loudspeakers said that she could hear running throughout the halls.

Patch editor Kyle Bagenstose contributed to this report.

Jeanne December 19, 2012 at 06:30 AM
udsdstudent I apologize for posting the wrong photo of the umbrella. It is what my udhs kid showed me and I mistakenly thought he had accurate info. I stand corrected.
Speaking Softly December 21, 2012 at 01:25 AM
If it makes you feel any better TRUTHsayer. I dismiss all your opinions for they are ignorant statements made out of emotion. None of you have the training or experience to accurately critique what happened. The real TRUTH, as with all situations, would be that some things were done well and others need improvement. Lets just hope the people involved spend the time and effort to know the difference.
JAG December 21, 2012 at 02:42 PM
grow up and see the real story.
Skye December 28, 2012 at 01:31 AM
To all the idiots saying this was a good thing - its retarded and it's the sort of hyper-vigilant police overstepping that has killed far more kids then the shooter at Newton - the thousands of kids shot over the years because they had a "gun" that turned out to be a toy or a cell phone after the cop who did it looked over the body. If you really want to live in a nation where you can be arrested for carrying an umbrella, move to China ... Stop encouraging this fascist bullshit in our own nation and claiming its to protect kids - it does the exact opposite.
mark smerkanich December 28, 2012 at 08:27 AM
If you make the choice to rant while making wild claims, I suggest you include statistics to back up your that hyper-vigilant police overstepping "... the thousands of kids shot over the years because they had a "gun" that turned out to be a toy or a cell phone after the cop who did it looked over the body. Sounds like another one of those urban legends said when there are no facts to back them up.

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