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An email from Principal Cox regarding today’s bank robbery

January 17th, 2013 · 5 Comments

Today’s bank robbery rattled our community and had a significant impact on Magnolia’s parents of school-aged kids.   Several of our schools were on lock down while police combed the area, looking for the suspect.  Here’s what went on at Catharine Blaine Elementary:

Dear Catharine Blaine Parents,

I will begin by letting you know that all of our students and staff are safe and in good care.  I am writing to update you on something that occurred in the Magnolia community today. There was yet another bank robbery this morning at US Bank in the Village. Parents called us immediately after they heard about the incident. The office staff quickly and efficiently let me know and security was called right away. We went into lock down mode at the school. Students were safe in their rooms, windows were covered, and the school was silent.  Ed Liebl, the head of SPS Safety & Security Office for the District and Ed Luke, Blaine’s Security Officer were out at the school.  At 12:30 they let us move from lock down status to shelter in place status. Students were able to move within the building, stayed inside for recess and all exterior doors were kept locked.  We stayed in this status until 1:15 PM, after we got the “all clear” from the District.  Thank you to those parents who were able to volunteer for cafeteria and recess duty today.  We are a strong team!

Since a lock down drill was already on our agenda for this afternoon, the students had been briefed and did not appear to be surprised.  However, it can still be startling for children. When your son or daughter gets home from school they may want to talk about our lock down event today.  If you need any type of support for you or your child, Mike Anderson and I are here and will make ourselves available to you.  We are all here to ensure the safety and security of all children here at Blaine.

Kind regards,

Julie A. Cox

Tags: Uncategorized

  • NosyNeighbor

    So, am I to understand that Blaine received no communication from the police regarding this matter and that notification came solely from parents? That’s extremely disturbing.

    And that the office staff does not have the discretion to declare a lockdown mode and must contact the principal first?

    Here, there was an armed robbery two blocks from the door of the community K-8 school and it sounds like it was parents who called and told the school. I think the Blaine community need seriously needs to consider the reality of what would happen if a serious threat walked in the front door because Blaine’s office staff would not have time to call 911, let alone summon the principal to make a decision on the matter, before serious harm could be done. On the other hand, an effective security setup would eliminate the need to close the blinds and hide under desks every time someone sneezes in the village.

    On another topic, I want to know why other schools and preschools in the area were released from lockdown almost an hour before Blaine was moved to “shelter in place” and nearly two hours before Blaine had the all clear. There seems to be a communication breakdown across the board. Perhaps the Magnolia Voice needs to organize a community summit with the police, SPS, and leaders of other local schools and preschools.

    • Neighbor, too

      What’s stopping you from organizing the community summit?

      • NosyNeighbor

        You’re the only one who listens to me, LOL!

    • BicycleJoe

      Uh, ya,… the Magnolia Voice will get right on that… … …

  • Magnum-olia

    Why were these criminals allowed to operate so close to a school? When you allow crooks like US Bank to exist, they only tend to attract more crime.