Men with BB gun resembling 'assault weapon' prompt Polk school lockdown

Deputies called to Davenport School of the Arts

By Daniel Dahm - Digital Manager

DAVENPORT, Fla. - A Polk County school was locked down Thursday morning after two men with at least one BB gun resembling an assault weapon were spotted near the campus, officials said.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office said a woman called 911 and reported the gunmen near Davenport School of the Arts at 4751 County Road 547 in Davenport.

Deputies said they found two men who matched the description and they were positively identified by the caller. The men said they had been target shooting on their property, less than a mile north of the school.

"Thankfully, this was not an active assailant situation," Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said. "We became aware of two suspicious people, and out of an abundance of caution, we responded swiftly and we were able to determine there was no legitimate threat."

One of the BB guns that caused a lock down at a Polk County school on Aug. 15, 2019. (Image: Polk County Sheriff's Office)

Judd complimented the caller for alerting authorities to a potential threat.

The lockdown was lifted and classes resumed.

Parents were able to pick up their children from the school once the lockdown was lifted.

U.S. Rep. Darren Soto, who serves Central Florida's 9th District, which includes Osceola County and parts of Orange and Polk counties, tweeted, "Students & faculty at Davenport School of Arts had major scare as 2 ppl w/ BB guns resembling assault weapons were spotted nearby."

Nearby Ridge Community High and Loughman Oaks Elementary schools were placed on heightened alert, but the safety measure was later lifted.

The FBI, Haines City and Davenport police, along with the Florida Highway Patrol, assisted the Sheriff's Office with the investigation. 

No other details have been released.

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