UNC Chapel Hill lockdown lifted, officials give all-clear
CHAPEL HILL N.C. (WNCN) – A lockdown at the University of North Carolina has been lifted after the school activated its sirens due to a police report of a possible armed and dangerous person on or near campus.
Chief Jeff McCracken, director of public safety at UNC, said they received a call about an individual with a rifle near the ROTC building on campus around 8:22 a.m. Wednesday.
UNC sent out an alert at 8:55 a.m. Wednesday alerting students of the situation. The “All Clear” was given at 9:22 a.m. Wednesday.
The university instructed students and staff to stay inside their classroom or to avoid campus.
UNC Public Safety tweeted out that there was an unconfirmed report of an armed person near the ROTC Building / Venable Hall. Police said the building, which houses military-grade guns and rifles, was locked at the time of the incident.
Joseph Cabosky, an assistant professor on campus, says he was walking to class near the ROTC building when he heard a bunch of sirens. He says he first didn’t pay much attention, but then he saw officers quickly set up a perimeter around the ROTC building on the front and the back sides with large rifles drawn.
He says about two to three minutes later, a pipeline of students came running out of the building and were rushed to the surface parking lot behind the building.
“It was eerily quiet but there were lots of officers with large guns,” said Cabosky. “It’s definitely scary and when we talk about safety on campus everyone is prepared so you have to keep the fear in check, but certainly when you see something going on, it does hit home.”
Multiple streets near the ROTC Building were blocked due to police activity.
During a news conference around 10:45 a.m., UNC Police said they believed the call originated from campus and they are still investigating the incident, however they said there was no immediate threat to UNC at this time.
Police also said there was a second incident involving an air rifle off campus that turned out to be unfounded.