Lockdown Lifted at Valley College After Phone Threat Prompts Evacuation
Los Angeles Valley College in Valley Glen was placed on lockdown for several hours Monday, and students and staff were warned to stay inside or away from campus as authorities investigated a possible threat on campus.
At about 9:45 a.m., police received a call from someone claiming that a person with a gun was headed to the campus located in the 5800 block of Fulton Avenue (map), Officer Wendy Reyes of the Los Angeles Police Department said.
The lockdown was lifted and there was a continuing investigation into the identity of the male caller, a Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman said on Twitter at about 2 p.m.
It was not immediately clear if there had been genuine threat to the safety of students or staff on campus.
The school was set to be closed for the remainder of the day, according to an emergency alert on the school’s website.
“If on campus, please stay inside and lock your doors. If not on campus, please stay away,” the alert stated.
Students and staff on campus were advised to stay behind locked doors and away from windows, which should have blinds lowered or closed.
The Sheriff’s Department was “systematically evacuating” the campus, a department spokeswoman said on Twitter just before 12:30 p.m.
Meanwhile, a freeway pursuit ended less than 2 miles from Valley College at a home in North Hollywood, where police were looking for a man armed with a rifle. Colfax Charter, Oakwood and North Hollywood High schools, among others, were on lockdown during the search for the armed and dangerous man in the area of 11600 Hartsook Street (map), police said.
At Valley College, police were at the scene assessing the situation, but the primary investigation was being handled by the Sheriff’s Department, according to a tweet from the LAPD.
Several Sheriff’s Department and LAPD patrol cars were positioned around the college during the initial investigation, aerial video from Sky5 showed on Monday morning.
At about 11 a.m., a Sheriff’s Department helicopter hovering over the campus announced on the loudspeaker that those on campus should go into a locked room or get off campus.
Multiple users on Twitter said they had received emergency notification from the campus that the school was locked down.
Parents were advised to go to the parking lot of neighboring Grant High School, a Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman said on Twitter at about noon.
Monday was the last day of final exams at Valley College, according to the school’s website. Finals scheduled for 12:30 p.m. were canceled, the school announced.
Valley College was the site of a robbery and shooting in January that left a 31-year-old man dead. Authorities had said the incident followed a drug deal gone wrong and was not connected to the school.
KTLA’s Jennifer Thang and Anthony Kurzweil contributed to this article.