Malfunctioning Heater Triggered Reports of Active Shooter at North Carolina High School

Frederick Owens
November 9, 2018

Authorities said he claimed to have brought the gun to school because he planned to stop a rumored school shooter.

Pender County Emergency Director Tom Collins said he believes a broken water heater caused the noise.

A SWAT team searched the building and every school in the east of the county was placed on lockdown, but no gunman was found and no injuries were reported. The report provoked a massive response by law enforcement and caused the school district to reroute buses and put schools on lockdown.

Local TV coverage showed police vehicles blocking the road leading to Topsail High School and a helicopter circling overhead.

HAMPSTEAD - Pender County Sheriff's deputies are on the scene of an active shooter call at Topsail High School.

- A report of an active shooter at a North Carolina high school sparked a large law enforcement response Friday morning, according to the Pender School System.

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When deputies arrived, they heard the sound of gunshots.

Buses carrying pupils to classes have been diverted to a safe area.

The school district said that parents who planned to drive their children to school should not do so. According to its website, school begins at 8:30 a.m.

WTVD reports the call came in at about 6:30 a.m. Friday morning.

Parents and students are gathering in the parking lot of a Lowes Foods.

Hampstead is about 20 miles north of the city of Wilmington.

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