Brevard County schools locked down over threat

Officials: Man said school shooting would be like Connecticut massacre

Published On: Dec 19 2012 01:07:18 PM EST   Updated On: Dec 19 2012 06:13:33 PM EST
Sea Park Elementary School
MELBOURNE, Fla. -

Several Brevard County schools were locked down Wednesday after a man made a threatening comment about a shooting similar to the Connecticut massacre, officials said.

According to Brevard deputies, a man went to the Space Coast Credit Union on Wednesday, where he was formerly employed, and expressed anger at the credit union. On his way out, the man made a verbal threat, aimed at the credit union saying he was going to do something to the credit union worse than they did in the schools.

The man told deputies he didn't threaten the schools and was taken into custody. Deputies said he appeared to be suffering from a mental health issue.

Sea Park Elementary School in Satellite Beach was among the schools locked down.  The full list of schools was not known, but cities from Merritt Island to Palm Bay were affected.

The Brevard County schools security officer learned of the threat from the Palm Bay police and decided to independently lock down the schools for a short time, according to deputies. A spokeswoman for Brevard Public Schools said the lockdowns were a precautionary measure made at the request of law enforcement.

School spokeswoman Michelle Irwin sent Local 6 a message about the incident.

"I am calling to make you aware of a situation that occurred today. Just prior to elementary school dismissal, our district office received information that a disgruntled private-sector employee made a statement that referenced harming others.

"As a precautionary measure, several of our schools went into lockdown mode, and dismissal was delayed while we waited for law enforcement to investigate. Once we received an all-clear from law enforcement, we were able to safely dismiss students."

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.