Utica schools closed twice in one day

Two separate lockdown incidents in the Utica City School District on Thursday caused tense moments for students and parents. Police say the first incident was carried out as a precaution, while the second was what is often referred to as ‘swatting’.

Utica police were called to a domestic incident on Bristol Street shortly after 11:00 a.m. Thursday with a report that shots may have been fired. Police say the suspect in the incident fled one residence and ran to another and barricaded himself inside, police said.

As a precaution, nearby schools have been closed.

Utica crisis negotiators and SWAT were able to speak to the man and say the situation ended peacefully. The man was taken to a local hospital for a mental health assessment and the lockdown was lifted. Cops say they expect to press charges and release more information once the man is released.

While dealing with this situation, the UPD was also called to Jones Elementary School for a reported active shooter at the school, something the police were completely untrue.

School administrators have placed the school on lockdown ensuring that all students and staff are behind locked doors, police said. Shortly after arriving, officers determined there was no shooter. Cops say they have received multiple ‘swatting’ calls in the past few days and are investigating whether they are related.

Anyone with information about the “swatting” calls is asked to call Utica Police at 315-223-3510. Cops are also reminding those with information that all advice can be kept 100% confidential, but using Crime Stoppers to www.mohawkvalleycrimestoppers.comby calling 1-866-730-8477 (TIPS).

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