SOUTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WPRI) - A lockdown at the University of Rhode Island's Kingstown campus was
lifted at 2:15 p.m. Thursday afternoon, about three hours after police
first received a report of a gunman inside the school's Chafee Hall.
State Police Col. Steven O'Donnell told our sister station WPRI.com investigators believe
there was never a gun or an active shooter, but he said they did recover
a Nerf gun during a room-by-room search of Chafee Hall, although it wasn't clear whether that was related.
No injuries were reported, and no eyewitnesses said they saw or heard gunshots.
is no evidence at all to indicate there was a firearm on campus at any
time, and there is no evidence to support that there was an active
shooter at anytime," O'Donnell said shortly before the lockdown was
lifted. "We want to make sure that's clear."
O'Donnell said state police are not calling the incident a hoax, but
he suggested one person's initial concern that there was a shooter may
have spread quickly, leading to the evacuation.
response to the incident, URI canceled classes on the Kingston campus
for the remainder of the day, all campus shuttles were stopped
and RIPTA buses were diverted away from campus until further notice. URI
said classes will resume Friday.
O'Donnell said the state police received a 9-1-1 call at 11:22 a.m.
reporting that someone knocked on the door of a classroom in Chafee Hall
and said: "I'm a good guy and I have a gun." Officers from the state
police, campus police and South Kingstown Police Departments responded
to the school.
Barbara van Sciver, the lecturer whose class was
disrupted, told WPRI.com she screamed for her students to leave the
building and they did so in an orderly manner. She said she heard lots
of yelling but didn't see a gun.
URI activated its Emergency
Operations Center in response to the incident and national news crews
quickly zeroed in on the suburban campus in South County amid nationwide
alarm over gun violence in the wake of the school shooting in Newtown,
Conn., last December.
Joshua Caulkins, a URI employee, told
WPRI.com he arrived at URI's campus around noon Thursday and found
roughly 150 students and staff members around Chafee Hall along with two
police cars and about six security personnel.
"Everyone's just standing around," he said.
said a woman told him she was inside a Chafee Hall classroom when a
student stood up and said, "I'm a nice guy! I'm a nice guy!" The
professor in the classroom then told everybody to get out.
Nobody outside Chafee Hall reported seeing or hearing any gunshots, Caulkins said.
said he and other staff members were continuing to work inside with the
doors to their offices closed. "It's calm - the area where I am is
deserted," he said. "Everyone's pretty much left."
The father of a
URI student told WPRI.com a female student in a classroom yelled out,
"He has a gun!" The student told her father that point the teacher told
the students to leave and it was "a stampede."
president of URI's Humans vs. Zombies club, told WPRI.com Nerf guns are
used in a well-known game played at the school that he described as an
"extreme version of tag." He said he hoped his club had nothing to do
with Thursday's gun scare, and police investigators said it may not have
URI said its website's servers were struggling
with "extraordinarily high volume" and was not loading properly. In
order to deal with the problem, the school replaced it's homepage
featuring the latest information on the situation. It is also getting
updates out through
@URINews and the school's
A spokeswoman for Gov. Lincoln Chafee's office directed questions to the state police.
You may also like...
Sinkhole Tragedy: Man sleeping in bed swallowed by sinkhole
That's NUTS! Squirrel causes massive outage at Tampa water plant
Rats! Rodents invade high school cafeteria
Out of this world mystery: "Pond circles" form over frozen pond
Faces of Meth: Before and After pictures
Sex tape scandal: Miss Delaware Teen USA resigns
Prostitute Roundup: 78 arrested in online sex sting
Upload error: Lawmakers consider restrictions on posting naked pics online
Neigh! Video shows man brutalizing, having sex with horse
Shake it: Harlem shake - 10 News style...
Sex blog: Tampa area school CFO busted over her dirty sex porn blog *warning, GRAPHIC*
Spring Breakers: Movie shows seedier side of Tampa Bay
BUSTED: Woman apologizes for flipping off judge *warning, GRAPHIC*
Nasty Nasty Dining: 10 of the nastiest restaurants in Tampa Bay in 2012
Cover Girl: Kate Upton back on the cover of Sports Illustrated
APP-tastic: Download the 10 News app for your iPad
Yowtch! Teen accidentally shoots off his penis, testicle
Bikini Photos: 2012 Hooters International Swimsuit Pageant
Money Mondays: How you can search for unclaimed cash
Sex Offender Mugshots: Look up Florida Sex Offenders here
Bikinis, mud, trucks: The Redneck Yacht Club
Naughty Schoolgirls: Naughty schoolgirl night at Tampa club pictures
Outrageous mug shot galleries...
Strange: Some of the most unusual mug shots we've seen
Notorious Women: Bad girls behind bars
Teachers: Teacher arrest mugshots
Celebrities: The rich and famous have their own booking photos
Jaw droppers: Open mouth mug shots
Laughers: What's so funny mug shots
Prostitutes: Prostitute mug shots
Athletes: Professional athlete mug shots
Porn arrests: Child porn arrest mug shots
Local Mugs: Hillsborough County Mug shots
More unusual mug shots and galleries: 10 News slideshows and galleries
CBS affiliate WPRI