ORLANDO, Fla. - Glenridge Middle School was on lockdown for much of the school day after receiving a tip that someone may have brought a gun onto campus, according to Orlando police.
According to police, a parent, who wouldn't identify herself, called the school in Baldwin Park around 9:30 a.m. anonymously after receiving a text from her daughter saying an unknown student was going to shoot students during lunchtime. The parent also said that an unknown person was seen putting something suspicious in a trash can.
Principal Heather Hilton said the anonymous tip was received after the start of first period.
Police said a loaded magazine for a handgun was found in a trash can, but no firearm was found. The magazine contained .22-caliber bullets.
Police had the school on lockdown while they searched for a weapon. They said they wouldn't lift the lockdown until the school had been thoroughly searched and each student checked.
Students were not allowed to change classrooms while police searched the facility.
Several parents gathered at the school as word of the lockdown spread.
After the lockdown was lifted, those parents who wanted to take their children home were allowed to do
The school alerted parents, by phone, of the lockdown earlier in the day with the following message:
This is Heather Hilton, Principal at Glenridge Middle School. We received an anonymous tip after the start of first period this morning providing information about a safety concern on campus. At this time all students are safely in their first period class and the school is on a modified lockdown until further directions are given by law enforcement. During a lockdown no one is allowed to enter or exit campus. Please be assured that your students are safe. I will be making another call as soon as more information is available."
Police never found a second witness who heard a rumor of a shooting and they want to track down the mother of the student who called it in.
Sgt. Jim Young, spokesman for Orlando Police Department, said they would be glad to keep it anonymous since it involved juveniles and their safety.
Police will provide extra security at Glenridge Middle for the rest of the week.
Sixth-grader Kira Diehl said she and fellow students thought it was a bomb because police wanted to check backpacks and lockers.
Sixth-grader Misty Wrenn said she was really scared.
"The first thing I thought was someone is going to shoot us," Wrenn said.
Wrenn's mother, Linda Marchetti, had waited anxiously outside for hours with dozens of other parents.
"I was crying. I can't rest at home knowing this is going on; that's why I'm here," Marchetti said.
Some parents believe Hilton withheld information.
In March, a seventh-grader was arrested for taking a loaded gun to school.