Police, school district responded according to emergency protocol
While the lockdown scare at Castle Heights Elementary on Friday afternoon startled students and staff at the school, both the police and school district were pleased with how the situation was handled.
Price City Police Captain Bill Barnes, and Steve Carlsen, Carbon School District Superintendent, both credited the police and school responses to the situation when Christopher Craig, 32, caused a disturbance on the campus leading the school to be placed on lockdown.
Craig drove his white Honda Civic over a curb before coming to a stop in the playground area outside classrooms at Castle Heights Elementary on Friday afternoon. According to Barnes, Craig was banging on the door of a classroom at the school shortly before he was placed under arrest
Police from Price City, Carbon County Sheriffs and USU Eastern quickly arrived on the scene as school buses and cars with parents waiting to pick up their children lined Homestead Boulevard.
Barnes said the police looked to resolve the situation as quickly as possible. The department was aware of Craig after previous run-ins with him over the past year, he said.
Police quickly arrested Craig and moved his car away from the school to get things back to normal as soon as possible, Barnes said.
"We try to resolve things fast in a situation like that," Barnes explained. "There was no need to create a panicked situation in this case."
Carlsen said the staff at Castle Heights handled the situation correctly. While the teacher and students in the classroom that Craig disturbed were a little shaken up, Carlsen said the school quickly moved the students and staff to another area at the school during the lockdown.
"The school handled the situation according to the protocol," said Carlsen. "In the end, it didn't cause a great disturbance."
Police said that Craig knew of the school's early Friday release and was attempting to pick up his child from the school. However, Barnes explained, his child was not at the school on Friday.
Craig was still being held at the Carbon County Jail as of Monday morning on a $19,000 bond. He is facing misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct, driving on a suspended license and failure to provide identification to an officer when asked. Craig is scheduled for an initial appearance in court on Wednesday.
Schools throughout the district practice for situations like this multiple times per year, Carlsen said. Last year, Castle Heights participated in drill with an active shooter situation. The training is done to help not only the students and staff, but also help with how police and emergency personnel respond to a possible situation.
"We're pleased with the response to the incident," said Barnes. "Thankfully it was not a more serious situation for anyone involved."