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Bullets found in hallway prompt high school, middle school lockdown

Students never in danger; police, district pleased with overall emergency response

Cazenovia Police Department and Madison County Sheriff’s Department responded to Cazenovia High School last Friday in response to two .22 caliber bullets being found in a second-floor hallway. K9 units from Utica police and Syracuse City police were called in to do a room-to-room and locker search for weapons or ammunition, and found neither.

Cazenovia Police Department and Madison County Sheriff’s Department responded to Cazenovia High School last Friday in response to two .22 caliber bullets being found in a second-floor hallway. K9 units from Utica police and Syracuse City police were called in to do a room-to-room and locker search for weapons or ammunition, and found neither.

— Dubik said that at the end of the day Friday, district administrators talked to all the buildings’ teachers and staff about the incident, and planned to speak to them again on Monday, April 7, just to review what happened, how everyone reacted and what, if anything, needs to be addressed or corrected in the future concerning the district’s emergency procedures. Overall, he said, all the students, teachers and administrators did a “great job.”

The incident did, however, bring to light a few minor issues with the district’s emergency response system that they will begin addressing immediately, Dubik said. These include the fact that Dubik’s recorded emergency message sent out to parents was sent only to homes and not to parents’ cell phones or emails as they should have. Also, it was discovered that some of the security cameras inside the school were not positioned exactly right to see all angles and those will be addressed as well.

Hayes agreed and said that if there is a silver lining to the event it is that the “holes” in the district’s security response were discovered and his department will work with the district to fix them.

Hayes said the case remains open and his department will continue to work with the school district on it.

“My staff responded beyond any of my expectations, and obviously it’s a good thing to know we’ve got good partners with Utica, Madison County and Syracuse city [law enforcement],” he said. In fact, every local law enforcement agency in the vicinity offered to respond and give Cazenovia aid – “That feels good,” Hayes said.

As for how and why the bullets ended up in the school or on the hallway floor, both Dubik and Hayes said they have “no idea.”

“I can’t even begin to think reasons why — is someone trying to test us? Were they in a kids’s pocket and fell out? I don’t know,” Dubik said.

“Most likely it was a kid who is hunter who brought the wrong backpack to school [and the bullets fell out], but in this day and age you can’t assume anything,” Hayes said.

Jason Emerson is editor of the Cazenovia Republican. He can be reached at editor@cazenoviarepublican.com.

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