Police: Four weapons found outside Standley Lake High School; school on lockout

Guns linked to nearby home break-in

WESTMINSTER, Colo. - Westminster Police say four weapons were found near athletic fields at Standley Lake High School on Wednesday afternoon.

Two of the guns were discovered by campus supervisor about 12:50 p.m. between two sheds by athletic fields, Westminster Police said via Twitter. Officers discovered two additional hunting rifles that had been thrown over the fence and were also on school property.  

Police said they do not believe the guns were part of a threat against the school, students or staff.   

The campus is located at 9300 W. 104th Ave.

Police said they know of no threats, but used police dogs to search school grounds and inside buildings as a precaution.

"Anybody who was at the police department who was available came out to the scene today," spokeswoman Westminster Police Department Investigator Cheri Spottke said.

Police were later seen searching a home in the 9000 block of West 103rd Avenue that had been burglarized. They found a gun safe along the school property line.

In addition to the guns, several personal belongings from the home were found in the area. 

The homeowner was in Estes Park when he was contacted by police who told him his home had been burglarized. He told 7NEWS he has rifles and shotguns used for hunting in his home.

"They went to some trouble to break in," the homeowner told 7NEWS. "They couldn't carry them all in one trip."

After school ended, several students told 7NEWS that police have taken into custody two non-student, teenage boys who had entered the school. This has not been confirmed by police.

Standley Lake Senior Garrett Webster told 7NEWS that the two teenagers walked into the school and attempted to pose as students.

"They were dressed in big, baggy clothes," Webster said. "They looked a little rough."

Spottke told 7NEWS that the area by the athletic sheds in which the shotgun and the lever actions rifle were found is accessible by anyone.

"It's open grounds so anybody, not only kids but anybody has access to that," Spottke said.

The school was put in lockout mode, which means school continued with normal educational programs but nobody is allowed in or out of the school, police said.

Students were held inside slightly longer than a normal school day.

"We feel confident the grounds and neighborhood are secured and have let school out at this time," Spottke said.

Police said they weren't aware of any recent threats against students or staff at the school.

Students react to the incident

Students at the school spoke to 7NEWS after the incident, saying they were nervous and did not know what would happen.

Amyssa Chavez, a 9th grader, heard the lockdown announcement and immediately knew something was wrong.

"I was scared, I wasn't sure what was going on, and I thought maybe someone was getting shot," Chavez said. "Something serious [is] going on if you have to be on lockdown, and several announcements were going off telling you, you had to keep the doors closed or you had to be in the gym."

Webster said none of the faculty would reveal anything about the situation.

"We mostly wanted to figure out what was going on," Webster said. "Nobody was telling us anything. All the staff was keeping real quiet."

Ethan Klose, a senior, says he was just trying to proceed through his day.

"There was guns stashed and I didn't know whether to be scared or whatever about it," Klose said. "I was a little worried  but just trying to get through the day."


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