At 2:40 p.m., James Elementary received a phone call from the Ottumwa Police Department to make the school aware that a manhunt was in progress in the general area of James. The police did not believe that the individual was in the immediate vicinity of the building and wanted the school to aware there would be several police officers in the area.
As a precaution, James controlled their dismissal today, releasing fewer students at a time and increasing staff presence in the front of the building. Parents were not allowed in the building, instead students met their parents at the front door. All doors were kept locked. All staff stayed until 3:30 p.m. to help provide additional supervision and to allow for the slow release of students.
Ottumwa Police called with an all clear at 3:10 p.m.
“There was never a direct threat to the school,” said Principal Jay Green. Bus students were released first, then students who had parents waiting. Students who walked were released after OPD gave the all clear.