Smyth County

Police talk about quick response in Smyth County Schools lockdown

SMYTH COUNTY, Va. - On Wednesday deputies talked with us about the quick action of school staff during Tuesday's lockdown.

Major Chip Shuler with the Smyth County Sheriff's Office says a suspicious woman was inside the gate at Atkins Elementary School Tuesday morning and was acting strangely. She ran away when confronted.

Deputies later found an abandoned car near Oak Point Elementary School, which led to the lock down of Oak Point, Smyth Career and Technology Center, and Chilhowie Elementary, Middle and High Schools.

Chilhowie Police found the woman, who they say had mental health issues.

Shuler says he was proud of the way everyone sprang into action to protect the students. "I feel really good about how things went through law enforcement and the school system Tuesday. Everybody reacted exactly like we practiced for these type of events and it went really well," adds Shuler.

Shuler says no children were in immediate danger and a weapon was never produced.

The woman was taken for mental evaluations.

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