Sounds similar to gunshots prompt evacuation at Sunburst Elementary School

Apr 10, 2023, 6:55 PM | Updated: 7:03 pm

LAYTON, Utah — Dozens of armed officers rushed into Sunburst Elementary School Monday after a report of a possible shooting. Thankfully, it wasn’t one, but parents and students were still shaken up.

“Obviously, people are shaken up. Kids are a bit emotional and shaken up by it, which we understand,” said Lt. Travis Lyman with the Layton City Police Department.

It was just before 1:30 p.m. when a Davis School District security member, who is at an off-site facility monitoring audio and security video at schools around the district, was alerted to suspicious sounds coming from the elementary school.

“This person reported that here at this school, they heard what they thought was a scuffle and may have been gunfire,” Lyman said.

Lyman said the district security member immediately told Layton dispatch about a possible shooting, sending the school into lockdown and all available law enforcement to the campus.

“I got a text from my wife who said there is about 10 cop cars and cops running in with giant rifles,” said Jon Evans, a father with two children at Sunburst Elementary. “I was at work and got here as soon as I could to see what’s going on.”

“I was at work reading something on my phone when the alert came through,” said Tyler Gapinski, who also has two children at the school. “It didn’t register at first, and then I realized what it was and my heart dropped, and I just ran out of the meeting and drove here as fast as I could.”

Within minutes, Layton police had over 25 officers at the school, and determined there was no threat.

“We couldn’t hear anything. Nobody was pointing to a threat or running from an area,” Lyman said. “Our officers encountered locked doors, lights off, kids hiding with their teachers — all of that just like they practiced, which we were impressed with.”

According to the Davis School District, the sounds of gunfire were two students who thought they were stuck in an elevator.

“Two students were in the elevator at the time and reported they hit the alarm after they thought the elevator had stopped. When the alarm engaged, a district security monitor at another location heard banging sounds coming from the elevator and called Layton City Police,” said Christopher Williams, director of communication and operations for the Davis School District.

KSL TV spoke with several parents outside of Sunburst Elementary Monday, who said they were grateful for how the district and law enforcement responded to the false threat.

“We’re just so grateful for the police presence. They were quick to be on the scene, and the principal made sure we knew what was going on,” Evans said.

“It was nerve-racking. I was a little scared,” Gapinski said. “But I was pretty impressed with the response from Layton City police, so I was pretty happy with that.”

Lyman said Monday’s response did reveal one area of concern he hopes the district can address, and that’s kids out at recess when a lockdown goes into place. He said the police department will work with the Davis School District to make sure students know what to do in that situation. Beyond that, he said he’s pleased with how the department responded, and praised the security personnel at the district for not hesitating when they felt there may be a threat.

“It doesn’t sound like they hesitated at all to call our dispatch center and report what they were hearing before they were able to confirm anything on site, which I think is appropriate. That’s the way it should happen. If they’re at all concerned about something, they should send us to look into it.”

KSL 5 TV Live

Safe Schools

Rep. Ryan Wilcox, R-Ogden. and Sen. Ann Millner, R-Ogden in the School Safety Security Task Force m...

Brianna Chavez

School Safety Security Task Force discuss new requirements for schools as part of new bill

The School Safety Security Task Force met on Monday for the first time this year to discuss new school safety requirements implemented in HB84.

6 days ago

FILE - The 1200 building at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., is seen, Oct. 2...

Terry Spencer, Associated Press

Six years after the Parkland school massacre, the bloodstained building will finally be demolished

The demolition of the building where 17 people died in the 2018 Parkland school shooting is set to begin. Crews will begin tearing down the three-story building at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Friday.

11 days ago

[FILE] Jail Handcuffs (KSL-TV)...

Michael Houck

Man in custody after trying to kidnap a ‘young girl’ during track meet, police say

A local man is in jail for allegedly grabbing a girl against her will near Emery High School on Friday, according to the Emery County Sheriff's Office.

1 month ago

The new weapon detectors used by Salt Lake City School District (Scott G. Winterton/ Deseret News)...

Braden McElreath and Michael Houck, KSL TV

Survey: About 33% of Salt Lake City students do not believe weapons detectors make school safer

In April, Salt Lake City School District board members briefly reviewed survey results of the new weapons detectors that were placed in local schools.

2 months ago

The Payson Police Department on Wednesday said it and federal law enforcement partners are investig...

Logan Stefanish,

Local, federal law enforcement investigate bomb threats after ‘furry’ outrage at middle school

The Payson Police Department on Wednesday said it and federal law enforcement partners are investigating bomb threats made against Mt. Nebo Middle School.

2 months ago

A Payson police vehicle is pictured on Monday, March 22, 2021. Payson police are investigating seri...

Josh Ellis

Payson police, Nebo School District address threats against Mt. Nebo Middle School

The Nebo School District and Payson Police Department will address recent threats against Mt. Nebo Middle School that have disrupted classes three times over the last two weeks.

2 months ago

Sponsored Articles

Photo courtesy of Artists of Ballet West...

Ballet West

The rising demand for ballet tickets: why they’re harder to get

Ballet West’s box office is experiencing demand they’ve never seen before, leaving many interested patrons unable to secure tickets they want.

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 internet safety tips for kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why printer security should be top of mind for your business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light up your home with these top lighting trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for hassle-free computer repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Sounds similar to gunshots prompt evacuation at Sunburst Elementary School