Update: Long Beach PD Probe Locks Down Los Al Schools

Long Beach police investigating a burglary suspect leads to a lock down at numerous Los Alamitos school this Friday.

Update at 3:45 p.m.

With wider lock down, manhunt reassurances, and school district comment.

A lockdown at Los Alamitos schools triggered by a report of a Long Beach burglary suspect in the area has ended, authorities said. And they assured a jittery public that the lockdown had nothing to do with widespread manhunt for Christopher Dorner, the triple-murder suspect.

The schools, including Los Alamitos High School, followed the emergency procedures after the Long Beach Police Department was alerted to a suspicious person and “possibly a burglary” in the 3400 block of Halbrite Avenue, according to Cynthia Arrona, department spokeswoman.

“I just wanted to confirm that we were out for an investigation, and the lock down has been cancelled,” Arrona said. “We were investigating as a courtesy.”

At about 9:35 a.m. this morning, a caller reported the incident to the police, Arrona said, and LBPD sent a message to people in Cypress to be aware of the suspicious person and “somehow Los Alamitos” High School got wind of it and went into lock down.

According to Arrona, going into lock down was the high school’s decision.

“It’s entirely up to the school and what they want to do and their own protocol,” Arrona said.

Arrona said she had no description of the person, and officers were still investigating to see if a crime had been committed.

Local parents tipped Patch off to the lockdown. At least two parents received text messages from their students alerting them of the lockdown. 

Besides Los Al high, three other schools were on lockdown, according to the Los Alamitos Unified School District.

Though local authorities have been searching nearby La Palma for ex-Los Angeles Sheriff’s Deputy Christopher Dorner -- who allegedly killed at least three people -- the 10 a.m. lockdown was “just a cautionary measure” in response to a report of a suspicious person and possible burglary nearby, said Los Alamitos Unified School District Superintendent Sherry Kropp.

The lockdown began at about 10 a.m. and went on for less than a half hour, according to Kropp.  

In the wake of the Sandy Hook mass shooting, Kropp said, the district has been “more cautious” but added that even if New Town Connecticut tragedy hadn’t happened, "to be safe" the school would still have locked down after receiving the suspicious person report from LBPD

“We would have done this no matter what,” Kropp said.

According to Kropp, during a lockdown, students stay in their classrooms with the doors locked. The staff can communicate with teachers through the public address system and through teacher phones and emails. Many teachers have computers in their classrooms.


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