Reports of gunshot put Mountainview Elementary on lockdown

Reports of gunshot put Mountainview Elementary on lockdown

YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. -- "No, no, not out here, no," said Susan Peterschick.

Susan was startled to see deputies surrounding her daughter's elementary school Thursday morning. She was relieved at the quick response to a possible gun shot.

"I just feel that this is a safe place for her, especially when law enforcement was all here doing what they were supposed to do," she said.

The call came in that a bullet had hit the windshield of a riding lawnmower operating on school grounds. The maintenance worker was fine, but the crew told deputies there was a loud noise that could have been a gunshot. Mountainview Elementary was put on lockdown just as students were arriving on campus.

"I was just being hopeful that it was just something accidental that shattered the window,” said West Valley School District Superintendent Michael Brophy.

During the lockdown, parents were turned away from dropping their kids off, and school buses were rerouted to Cottonwood Elementary. Deputies searched the grounds and found nothing suspicious. The all clear was given after about an hour.

"Very cooperative and very under control; there were no big issues," said John Durand of the Yakima County Sheriff's Office. "Some of the children got a little anxious sitting on the bus, but other than that there were no problems."

After the lockdown, the school held an impromptu assembly to explain to kids that they are safe at school. Parents said they felt informed and confident in the reaction.

"I know they would not reopen the school unless it was safe,” said Jodi Seelig. “I have full confidence in that."

Mountainview Elementary continued its day as normal, and there was no evidence of a gunshot. At this point, investigators haven't determined what caused the windshield to break. It could have been as simple as a rock kicked up by the mower.