COLUMBUS, Ohio — Officers from the Westerville Police Department responded to a report of a gun at a high school in Westerville Friday night.
A call came in at 9:33 p.m. on a report of a male with a gun at Westerville North High School, according to police. The gun was allegedly spotted during a boys varsity basketball game.
Police say multiple people reported seeing a man flash a pistol. Officers cleared out the gym but were unable to find the suspect.
No injuries were reported. No additional information was provided.
Superintendent Dr. John Kellogg and Westerville Police Lieutenant Greg Franey released the following joint statement to Westerville City School District families Saturday afternoon:
"As spectators were leaving last night’s Boys Varsity Basketball game at Westerville North, reports began circulating that someone in a crowd that began gathering outside of the school had displayed a gun. This caused a panicked response among some individuals as they rushed to return into the school. Word of this alleged incident continues to spread on social media and throughout the student body.
We are writing today for two reasons. We first would like everyone to know that school officials and the Westerville Division of Police continue to investigate this matter. There was already an increased police presence at the event given the importance of the game, so last night’s response to the reported incident was immediate. While there were at least two brief altercations that developed outside of the school, one of which was witnessed first-hand by a school administrator in the area, there is no credible evidence to confirm that anyone had or displayed a weapon.
We also would like to ask any community members, as well as any students or their family members, who attended last night’s game to contact us if they personally witnessed someone with a weapon at the event. As you know, possession of a weapon on school grounds is illegal and law enforcement officials are interested in pursuing any credible leads in this matter.
To reiterate, at this point there is no credible evidence or firsthand witnesses to corroborate the report of a weapon at last night’s game. If you have any information to share that would help advance this investigation, please contact the Westerville Division of Police at (614) 882-7444. Until this occurs, the matter can only be considered to be a rumor intended to incite panic among those in attendance.
Please know that we will have members of our mental health and wellness team at Westerville South and Westerville North on Monday for any students who may wish to discuss or need additional support to process this matter."