May 26, 2022 - News

Northfield High School lockdown lifted after report of weapon on campus

Authorities take a person into custody outside Northfield High School in Denver on May 26, 2022. Photo: Esteban L. Hernandez
Authorities take a person into custody outside Northfield High School in Denver on May 26. Photo: Esteban L. Hernandez/Axios

Northfield High School in Denver locked down its campus Thursday morning in response to a report of a student with a weapon, school officials told parents.

The latest: "All of the kids at the Northfield High School are safe," Denver Police chief Chief Paul Pazen said Thursday at a press conference, noting roughly 2,000 students were on campus at the time of the incident.

  • Two people were taken into custody, the police chief added, noting that a paintball gun was found at the scene. Pazen said potential charges are pending and that the investigation remains active and ongoing.

What happened: A student saw a "potential threat" on Thursday morning and informed campus security. Police responded within three minutes, per Pazen.

  • The lockdown began shortly before 10am but lifted by 11am, according to Northfield officials, who posted updates for parents on the school's Facebook page.
  • Northfield is closed for the remainder of the day. Students are being bused the Northeast Denver Public Schools bus terminal at 4937 Dallas St. to reunite with parents.

What they're saying: Amanda Vallero has a freshman daughter at Northfield. She was standing across from the school, texting her daughter, who said she was safe inside. When asked what was going through her head at the time, she simply said: "panic."

  • At a press conference, DPS Superintendent Alex Marrero called what happened at Northfield High School "a foolish act," but he commended authorities.

The big picture: The chaotic scene in Denver — with law enforcement carrying rifles, helicopters hovering overhead and parents frantically texting their children from outside the school — comes just days after a gunman killed 19 students and two teachers at a Texas elementary school.

  • The lockdown came a day after Boulder police arrested a 14-year-old on Wednesday for threatening a shooting at a middle school.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with new details.

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