A Stillwater elementary school and surrounding neighborhood was evacuated Wednesday morning after a woman walked into school and seemed to make a threat to harm students.
Around 7:45 a.m. Wednesday, a caller to 911 from the school said the woman had a wire hanging out of her bag and was saying she was going to “take the kids to heaven”.
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol bomb squad was called in. And not only was the school evacuated, but neighbors in a one-block radius were asked to leave their homes.
“They knocked on the front door and the officer said you have to evacuate,” said Carolyn VanDeventer.
VanDeventer said she was told the woman had wandered through her backyard.
“I’m shaken up,” she said.
The concern came after the woman, who police describe as of Middle Eastern descent, walked into the Westwood Elementary School office.
“They clearly identified her as not a parent that they knew and the conversation was about, ‘How can I help you?’ And she just kept repeating the same statement over and over,” said Interim Superintendent Gay Washington.
The assistant principal escorted the woman out of the building and once police arrived they took her into custody.
“The statement, ‘I’m here to take your kids to heaven.’ could be taken a lot of different ways,” explained Capt. Kyle Gibbs. “It’s very concerning given her demeanor and that she has no kids at the school.”
The bomb squad found nothing suspicious in the purse and by around 11 a.m. police allowed residents back into their homes.
Police are considering this a mental health issue and therefore not releasing the woman’s name.