PROSSER — The hunt for an eluding suspect prompted a lockdown Wednesday at Prosser schools just as students were supposed to head home for the day.
Grandview officers were chasing a “recklessly driven vehicle” when the driver left the car and fled on foot, according to a news release from the Grandview Police Department. Police tracked the man to the backyard of a home at the intersection of Wine Country Road and Mercer Court in Prosser, Washington State Patrol Lt. Terry Liebrecht said.
Initial reports indicated the man might be armed, Liebrecht said.
The 31-year-old man was arrested in Prosser, according to the news release.
The lockdown lasted from about 1:30 to 2:05 p.m., said Ray Tolcacher, superintendent of the Prosser School District, causing students to stay at school a few minutes late. School gets out an hour early on Wednesdays in Prosser.
Police asked school officials to impose the highest level of lockdown, which means all students stay inside their classrooms, without explaining why, Tolcacher said. A few students running during a P.E. class took shelter inside a room at the football stadium about a block away from the high school, Tolcacher said.
The timing left many parents gathered at school building doors and waiting in idling cars.
“Some of them weren’t happy,” Tolcacher said.
The lockdown was Tolcacher’s second scramble Wednesday. He canceled school at Whitstran Elementary after the building lost power early in the day.
“This has been a nutty day,” he said.