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Phoned Threat Leads to Lockdowns at Clovis West, Fort Washington

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Fresno police cars massed at Clovis West High School Friday afternoon after a phoned threat. (GV Wire/Johnny Soto)
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Two northeast Fresno schools went on lockdown Friday afternoon after a Fresno police substation received a phoned threat, Clovis Unified spokeswoman Kelly Avants said.

Clovis West was placed on lockdown at 2:15 p.m. after police reported the threat, she said. Students at Fort Washington Elementary across Millbrook Avenue also were put on lockdown inside the school.

“We have officers on campus investigating and inspecting the facility to ensure students are safe and that no credible threat exists to our schools,” Avants said in an email. “Our safety protocols are being followed and students are indoors to ensure their safety until the conclusion of the investigation. Parents are being informed using our auto notification system that allows messages to go out within minutes.”

Fresno police spokesman Bill Dooley said police received a 911 call from a male subject who said he was heading to the school to commit a shooting.

Officers responded and learned no shooting has taken place.

“Although this appears to be a crank/spoof call at this time, we are handling this event through our normal protocols,” he said.

Police are working with school officials on the plan for releasing students from the lockdown, he said.

Fort Washington Update

2:56 p.m.: Clovis Unified reports that the Fort Washington Elementary lockdown has been lifted after Fresno Police said it was safe to do so. The school will conduct a “monitored” release of students through the front office, and parents picking up students should come to the front office.

Students who walk home will not be released without the supervision of a parent or guardian. There are no afterschool athletics. Special Education buses will be operating as scheduled, and Campus Club is also continuing on shelter in place.

Traffic exiting the campus will need to drive south on Millbrook.

Clovis West Update

Clovis Unified said that Clovis West students also are being released from lockdown on a “monitored” release as follows:

Please see the following detail of how the safe student release will take place this afternoon:

  • Students who ride the bus will be escorted to a Clovis Unified bus for school to home transportation. Buses will be delayed after the typical end of school by approximately 30-60 minutes to allow for the supervised release of students onto buses.
  • Students who use personal vehicles for school to home transportation will be held on campus until bus riders have been loaded. They will then be released in phases under officer supervision.
  • Parents can pick up their student now from a release point located at the south side of our Teague Avenue tennis courts. Students will remain under the supervision of staff and officers during this release.
  • Students who walk home will remain on campus until officers give us the approval to release them into the neighborhood.

This story will be updated.

GV Wire staffer Johnny Soto contributed to this report.

Nancy Price is a multimedia journalist for GV Wire. A longtime reporter and editor who has worked for newspapers in California, Florida, Alaska, Illinois and Kansas, Nancy joined GV Wire in July 2019. She previously worked as an assistant metro editor for 13 years at The Fresno Bee. Nancy earned her bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Her hobbies include singing with the Fresno Master Chorale and volunteering with Fresno Filmworks. You can reach Nancy at 559-492-4087 or Send an Email