This story will be updated.
Students and staff of a Topsham-area school district sheltered in place for a couple hours Thursday after a man allegedly threatened to bring a weapon to one of the district’s schools, according to Maine School Administrative District 75.
The threat allegedly came from a Caribou man who had a conflict with a former student at an unnamed elementary school, according to a letter that interim Superintendent Heidi O’Leary sent to the school community at 10:05 am.
O’Leary said the information came from the Topsham Police Department, that the schools were sheltering as a precaution, and that there was “no indication of any immediate danger to students and staff.”
In a subsequent email at 1:43 pm, O’Leary said that the shelter-in-place order had been lifted.
Someone from the Topsham Police Department said the suspect was arrested in Fort Fairfield around 1 p.m. More details weren’t immediately available.
MSAD 75 includes the towns of Topsham, Harpswell, Bowdoinham and Bowdoin.
“Out of an abundance of caution, all schools are currently in a shelter in place while law enforcement continues to assess the situation,” O’Leary wrote when announcing the shelter-in-place order on Thursday morning. “I was informed by the Topsham Police Chief that the police in that town are working to arrest this man.”
A member of the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office was parked outside the Harpswell Community School around 12:30 p.m. He told a reporter that people were safe at the school, but did not elaborate.
The MSAD 75 schools were closed down last week during the manhunt for 40-year-old Robert R. Card II, who lived in Bowdoin before killing 18 people during a mass shooting in Lewiston.
Jules Walkup is a Report for America corps member. Additional support for this reporting is provided by BDN readers.