WEST COVINA (CNS) - A report of a student possibly armed with a handgun prompted a lockdown at South Hills High School in West Covina, where officers found a replica handgun in the pupil's backpack.
Officers were called about 1:15 p.m. to the school at 645 Barranca St. after school staff told a resource officer of rumors that a student had a handgun, according to Lt. Travis Tibbetts of the West Covina Police Department.
Officers locked down the school, located the student and determined he was not in possession of a handgun, Tibbetts said.
“In an abundance of caution, officers conducted a detailed investigation by interviewing additional students and eventually found an inoperable replica handgun inside a backpack possessed by a student that was inside a classroom,” Tibbetts said.
The replica handgun was “possibly passed around between a few different students and as a result three juvenile students were arrested ... ,” Tibbetts said.
The students were booked on suspicion of bringing a handgun onto a school campus, Tibbetts said.
“Officers are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the incident and any specific threats that may have been made,” Tibbetts said, adding that police do not believe there is a current threat toward the school or its students in regard “to this specific incident.”
The school was placed on lockdown for about 30 minutes, police said.
The West Covina Police Department and school staff had previously conducted active shooter training, which was credited with leading to a quick resolution of the incident, Tibbetts said.