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Student Made Up Story About Gunman at Cupertino Middle School

The student who claimed he saw a gunman on the play field admitted he lied after a more than two-hour lockdown of multiple schools in the area.

The multi-school lockdown that occurred Friday morning turned out to be a fabricated story by a Cupertino Middle School student, officials said.

The student, who is not being named because he is a minor, is being interviewed at Sunnyvale Public Safety headquarters, spokesman Sgt. Dave Verbrugge said.

It all started around 10:30 a.m. when the male student went to his teacher and said he saw a man with a gun on the playing field.

The teacher called the principal who alerted an officer who was on campus dealing with another situation, Verbrugge said.

Police locked down the entire campus and surrounding roads and began their search. Deputies from the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department were on hand as well.

Nearby schools such as Homestead High School and West Valley Elementary School were placed on lockdown as a precaution, and Patch readers reported “Early Horizons on Lewiston, which shares space with the French-American school and DeLor Montessori” and “Resurrection Catholic School on Hollenbeck/Cascade is also on voluntary lock down.”

The student who made the claim was in the principal’s office while police searched the campus.

“They continued to interview him and check his story,” Verbrugge said.

And as things didn’t match up, the boy admitted he made up the whole story.

He will probably be issued a citation for filing a false police report then go to juvenile court, and Verbrugge said depending on the outcome of the interview and a discussion with the boy’s parents, there could be more charges.

Nobody was hurt during the incident, but Verbrugge said there was certainly damage done by the fear the claim put in parents, students and the school staff and faculty.

When the lockdown was lifted around 1:30 p.m. a “controlled release” of students at Cupertino Middle School was conducted, according to Cupertino Union School District spokesman Jeremy Nishihara.

Anvitha Bhat January 26, 2013 at 07:14 PM
I am a student in Cupertino Middle School. It was very scary. Some of the students in my class this was a drill, but after sitting still for more than 4 hours. We knew that this was not a drill. Me and some of my classmates thought that we were going to die. We were praying and holding hands for luck. We were supposed to have a dance on that day, but it got cancelled. I have to say, this was the most frieghtening moment I ever had in my life. We had to share 2 granola bars and 1 water bottle to the whole class. If we needed to go to the bathroom, we had to do it in the trash can. To me, it was a matter of life or death. It was really scary. And to hear that the kid made it up, it just devastated me cause we wasted more than 4 hours just sitting there.
Bob Goedjen January 26, 2013 at 08:20 PM
He just cost a department a bunch of money and hopefully this will be taken as an opportunity to drive the point home to the school body. I suggest making his parents pay the bill. Failing that, have all of the students pay their part of the bill. The alternative is don't listen to kids?

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