Oak Hill implements limited "shelter in place" amid WPPD search

By: 
RYAN PHILLIPS
DTL Editor
Oak Hill Academy implemented a limited "shelter in place" order Tuesday morning for students as the West Point Police Department looked for someone in the area considered to be "mentally unstable," but not believed to be armed or dangerous. 
 
Oak Hill Headmaster Cathy Davis confirmed the situation to the Daily Times Leader, saying officers with the WPPD had already come by the school after the individual in question was last spotted at Marshall Park shortly before noon on Tuesday. 
 
Police Chief Avery Cook said the male individual left a Community Counseling Services location, which prompted the search by police and resulting action by the school.
 
Community Counseling Services Chief Operating Officer Richard Duggin said the individual, who is not believed to be a violent threat, jumped a fence at the West Point Crisis Stabilization Unit and was thought to have headed off on foot toward Oak Hill Academy. 
 
"We immediately called the sheriff's office and police, I was even out looking for him," Duggin said. "He wasn't violent or anything." 
 
The search also did not impact operations at the West Point Consolidated School District. 
 
Cook said the individual had been located and returned to a secure location. He then said the shelter in place was initiated by the school and there was never a serious threat to students, faculty or staff. 
 
Davis said parents had been notified and the limited shelter in place was implemented out of an abundance of caution. 
 
"It's kind of like a lockdown, with the interior and exterior doors locked, but it's different from a true lockdown because in between classes, we are allowing [the students] to move from one class to another with adult supervision," she said. 
 
Davis then said the school had staff members outside checking the entrances to the school, while police and the school's athletic director have checked the school's athletic fields and other facilities.  
 
"They don’t think he is dangerous," Davis said. "But police keep driving by down Eshman [Avenue] a good bit." 
 
This is a developing story. The Daily Times Leader will provide more updates as they come available. 

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