Last week, Lamar Hawkins III, 14, had had enough. The Greenwood Lakes Middle School student took his father’s gun to school and shot himself in the bathroom, the report says. Deputies found his body after the family searched for four hours. The gun had been properly stored at home, the report says.
There’s a lot of change taking place on the block of Harrison Street just south of the Iowa City post office.
A former parking lot is being transformed into a five-story bank, a nearly 100-year-old elementary school will soon be leveled, and a unique construction project aims to merge residential town homes with a public parking ramp.
It’s that construction project, the proposed creation of a roughly 640 stall parking ramp at the corner of Harrison and Dubuque streets surrounded by 28 two-story condos, that city officials say embodies the type of construction they want to see in the Riverfront Crossings District.
“This I think is almost the poster child project really, when you get right down to it,” said Jeff Davidson, the city’s economic development administrator. “It’s a great project for Riverfront Crossings and will be keeping our momentum moving.”
But progressive development sometimes comes at a cost, and in this instance that means the demolition of Iowa City’s former Henry Sabin Elementary School.
Mike Haverkamp, staff development facilitator with the Iowa City Community School District and unofficial Sabin Elementary historian, said the pending demolition of the former school at 509 S. Dubuque St. has been foreshadowed since the school district’s administrative offices moved out in 2011.
But that doesn’t make the loss any easier.
“I’ll be sad to see it go; I think it’s a very visually interesting building,” Haverkamp said. “There was some pretty incredible craftsmanship that went into that building.”
Built in 1917-1918 to replace Iowa City’s First Ward School, Henry Sabin Elementary School was built with an almost identical footprint as Horace Mann, Longfellow and the now-demolished Kellogg schools.
Replacing post-Civil War era ward schools, Sabin and its three cohort schools were prime examples of the modern education facility of the early 20th century, Haverkamp said.
“They were very much cutting edge; they were the modern primary schools,” Haverkamp said. “They had a few minor changes from one to the next but that was the idea, they all started with basically the same floor plan.”
Sabin Elementary, named after iconic Iowa educator and State Superintendent of Schools Henry Sabin, who died the year the Iowa City school opened, operated as an elementary school through the late 1970s. The building then transitioned into an alternative school until Elizabeth Tate High School opened in 2006. The Iowa City Community School District’s administration offices moved into the Sabin building in the early 1980s and remained until moving to the district office’s current location at 1725 N. Dodge St.
While Sabin is slated for demolition, which could occur as soon as next year, the historic significance of the building has not gone unnoticed and Iowa City Senior Planner Robert Miklo said discussion has taken place to preserve some of the former school’s elements, including the ornamental limestone archways.
“The proposal is to salvage the entryway arches. They could be reassembled as an entryway or some sort of feature in the Riverfront Crossings Park,” Miklo said. “There would be some sort of plaque commemorating the history of the building.”
A unique project
Following the demolition of the Sabin building, Iowa City officials plan to create what has been described as a hybrid collaboration between public parking and private housing.
Unofficially dubbed the “Sabin Townhomes,” the proposed project would include a roughly 640-space, four-level parking ramp wrapped in 28 two-level stacked condos, Davidson said.
Kevin Monson, with Neumann Monson Architects, the firm designing the structure, said the town homes would act as a facade to hide the somewhat unappealing exterior of the parking ramp.
“They kind of almost hide the parking facility from the street,” Monson said. “It’s a unique product. I don’t think there’s anything like it in Iowa City. What makes it even more unique is (tenants will) have their parking spot outside their back door.”
Plans are being finalized and Davidson said he expects the Iowa City Council to formally discuss the project in October. The property is owned by MidWestOne Bank and the city likely would enter into a development agreement with the bank to spell out the city’s eventual acquisition of the parking ramp.
The roughly $15 million parking facility would take about 15 months to complete, while the entire project could take up to two years to complete, Davidson said. The city would lease to own the parking ramp, while the condos — geared toward working professionals — would likely be sold outright.
Monson, who also was involved in the design process of the nearby MidWestOne Bank building, said both projects were designed to work in tandem, while keeping with the goals laid out in the Riverfront Crossings District master plan.
“It’s a very symbiotic relationship with the town homes creating life on the street and keeping Dubuque Street in the residential neighborhood feel, yet while providing parking,” Monson said. “Being able to develop the projects together made it all happen. Without being able to do them jointly, you’d never be able to do this.”
Building a new bank
On the corner of Clinton and Harrison streets, work continues full steam ahead on MidWestOne Bank’s five-story office building.
Kent Jehle, the executive vice president of MidWestOne Bank, said the project has seen a few slight delays, due in large part to a difficult winter, but the roughly $13 million project is anticipated to be completed next June.
The first three floors of the building will house the bank’s home mortgage center — which is currently operating in the former Sabin school — and a few other offices, while the top two floors likely will be leased or sold to commercial tenants as office space.
Close to 80 bank employees will work in the new building, Jehle said.
The events leading to MidWestOne’s relocation to Iowa City’s Riverfront Crossings District actually began more than six years ago when flooding in 2008 devastated the University of Iowa campus, including the School of Music complex.
Seeking a place to rebuild, UI officials struck a deal with MidWestOne Bank management to purchase the bank’s former home mortgage center at 325 S. Clinton St., where work on the future Voxman-Clapp Recital Hall is taking place.
In the agreement, MidWestOne leased the lower floor of the Sabin building to operate as a temporary location while work began on the bank-owned property directly to the west of the school for the future home mortgage center.
Jehle said the process was a little complicated but worked out great in the end, ultimately placing the bank building dead center in the rapidly growing Riverfront Crossings District.
“The timing of Riverfront Crossings and the timing of our need coincided; certainly it was motivated by the need of the university because of the flood in 2008,” Jehle said.
When the new facility is completed, all bank operations taking place next door in the Sabin building will move into the new bank, opening up the former school’s site for its impending demolition.
“The temporary location has worked fine for us, but we knew going in it was not permanent,” Jehle said.
Reach Mitchell Schmidt at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 887-5402.
Investigation into the “suspicious person” on Richlands Elementary School’s campus have lead deputies to believe the lockdown was due to a case of mistaken identity, according to an update from the Onslow County School System.
After a review of surveillance tapes, deputies concluded there was no malicious intent involved in Friday morning’s lockdown.
It’s unclear what deputies saw on the tapes.
Here is the full version of the school system’s news release:
“The Onslow County Sheriff’s Department has concluded its investigation into the report of a suspicious person on Richlands Elementary School campus Friday morning. Following its investigation and thorough review of school surveillance tapes, the sheriff’s department notified Onslow County Schools they have determined this was a case of mistaken identity and there was no malicious intent involved.
Onslow County Schools would like to thank the Onslow County Sheriff’s Department and Emergency Services, Richlands Police Department and Highway Patrol for their quick response and coordination with the school system to protect our students.”
NewsChannel12 is working to figure out what deputies saw on the tapes.
PREVIOUS STORY: Police say they have stopped searching for a “suspicious person” spotted on the campus of Richlands Elementary Friday morning. The report prompted the school and three others nearby to go on lockdown.
Suzie Ubrich of Onslow County Schools said the suspicious person was first seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary at about 10:01 a.m. Friday, but did not enter the school building.
The suspicious person was described as a white man wearing camouflage pants and an Army-green shirt, law enforcement said. When asked whether the person was armed, authorities said they would not comment at this point of the investigation.
Richlands Elementary went on lockdown immediately after the person was spotted. Students and teachers were not allowed to leave the school as law enforcement searched for the person.
Three other schools– Richlands Primary, Richlands High School and Trexler Middle School– were also locked down as a precaution, said Ubrich.
“Any time there’s something like this, we want to go into a community lockdown,” said Dusty Rhodes, Onslow County Schools’ director of safety and security. “We want to protect every school and every child.”
Due to a calls from the school system, parents gathered in large numbers outside Richlands Elementary. Many were worried about the welfare of their children.
“We just heard there was people inside the school,” said Roger Habbs, who has a son that goes to Richlands Elementary. “We’re just trying to find out if that’s true or not. It’s really nerve-racking trying to figure out what’s going on right now.”
Law enforcement searched on foot and used a police K-9, but did not find the suspicious person. They searched the inside and outside of Richlands Elementary before deciding to lift the lockdowns at 12:45 p.m. Friday.
No one was hurt.
School continued as normal after the lockdowns. However, many parents did pick up their kids.
[UPDATE 12:45 P.M.] Lockdowns have been lifted for Richlands Elementary, Richlands Primary, Richlands High School and Trexler Middle School.
Investigators said the “suspicious person” seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary Friday morning has not been found.
He is described as a white man wearing camouflage pants and an Army-green shirt. When asked whether the person was armed, authorities said they would not comment at this point of the investigation.
No one is hurt.
[UPDATE 12:11 P.M.] Police have started using K-9s to sweep Richlands Elementary.
[UPDATE 11:55 A.M.] Troopers say authorities are searching Richlands Elementary, but have not found the suspicious person that was reported on campus.
Suzie Ubrich of Onslow County Schools says the suspicious person was first seen on the campus of Richlands Elementary at about 10:01 a.m. Friday, but did not enter the school building.
An Avondale high school was on lock down for several hours Friday afternoon after reports of a possible weapon on campus, according to police.
Westview High School was secured while police searched the campus for a student seen wearing a holster, but police say a search turned up empty.
Parents got an automated voicemail from the school shortly before 2 p.m. alerting them to a situation on the campus at 107th Avenue near Indian School Road.
One angry parent, Sheri Mitchell, said she was frustrated with the minimal amount of information parents were given about the ordeal.
“Dr. Wilson, the parents are wondering why you coward behind the brick wall instead of addressing the many parents that were in front anxiously awaiting for their children,” Sheri Mitchell said, referring to school Principal Michele Wilson.
Several parents said they tried calling the front office multiple times during the lock down, but no one answered.
Itzel Palafox stood with other concerned parents outside of the school on Friday afternoon, awaiting more information from police officers at the scene.
Palafox said her daughter, Stephanie, a senior at the school, was texting her saying she was scared because she heard rumors that there was someone with a weapon in the building.
During the lock down, police were releasing the students class by class with an escort, said Sgt. Mathew Hintz, an Avondale Police Department spokesman.
Parents were asked to pick up their children at the school, but those students who usually walk home were kept in the school gym until the school was officially cleared by police.
All students had been released by 5 p.m.
Westview High School has about 2,000 students and 140 staff members, and is in the Tolleson Union High School District.
COMMACK, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – Commack school officials are investigating after two pictures appeared on social media apparently showing high school students wearing T-shirts spelling out the word “rape.”
The two pictures appear to have been taken on the athletic field at Commack High School after the school’s annual “senior photo” event Thursday, the school said.
One picture shows five teenage boys wearing T-shirts spelling out “rape?” In the second photo, the shirts spell out “rape.” and a sixth boy is seen on the ground with his hands tied, 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reported.
Commack High School Students In Hot Water After Posting ‘Rape’ T-Shirt Photos On Twitter
The pictures were posted briefly on Twitter, but were removed following complaints, Rivera reported.
The school district said it’s appalled by the pictures and is weighing possible disciplinary action against the students involved.
“There is no doubt that these students showed an inexcusable lack of judgment, and their actions are taken very seriously by the entire school community,” the school said in a statement. “At this time, we are actively engaged in a comprehensive investigation to determine the full scope of this matter and whether or not this was an isolated incident. At this time, it does appear that this is an isolated incident. Moving forward, and upon completion of our investigation, we will take the necessary and appropriate actions including, but not limited to, disciplinary and legal action if applicable.”
“We deeply regret the turmoil caused by the actions of these students, and know that it does not reflect the values of the rest of Commack High School or the Commack community,” the school said.
As CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan reported, child guidance experts say the incident is a wake up call.
“Everything going on with the NFL, in terms of domestic violence, child abuse and sexual assault, it is offensive to use social media to joke about rape,” Alane Fagin said with the Child Abuse Prevention Services of Long Island
Many who saw the pictures said they found them upsetting.
“It doesn’t look good to me,” parent Debbie Saporta said. “I just see it and get upset.”
“I think it’s a good way to open discussions about what’s right, what’s wrong,” another parent said.
“I think it’s horrible,” said Chris, whose sister is a student at the high school. “They should be punished for this, this is not a joke,”
“They’re all great kids, some of them are athletes, good students,” Commack senior Ryan Elgar said. “It’s just unfortunate, really.”
“A lot of kids in our school really don’t make the best decisions, but they’re 17 years old,” Nick Mueller, a senior at the school, said. “When I saw it I kind of understood that this could be very bad.”
One parent said the whole incident has been blown out of proportion.
“It’s an incident that was not criminal,” the woman said. “I don’t know why a big thing is being made out of it.”
The school is providing counseling to students impacted by the incident and “will continue to educate our children regarding their personal and online actions and reactions.”
You May Also Be Interested In These Stories:
- East Elmhurst, Queens Shooting Leaves Multiple People Wounded
- Thieves Make Off With Thousands In Jewelry In Long Island Smash-And-Grab
- Giant Tortoise, Last Of His Species, On Display At Natural History Museum
- Quick Thinking Cop Saves Woman From Choking On The Bronx River Parkway
Andrew Hill High School in East San Jose was evacuated and students were escorted to another school as police investigated a bomb threat made by a man seeking ransom, a school district administrator said Friday.
Investigators eventually determined the threat to be unfounded.
Police spoke on the phone to “a strange man” who told them he placed a bomb on the school campus and asked for a “ransom,” East Side Union High School District superintendent Chris Funk said.
The approximately 2,000 students enrolled at Andrew Hill were being evacuated and escorted on foot a few blocks south to Sylvandale Middle School at 653 Sylvandale Ave., Funk said.
Police gave the “all clear” at about 4:30 p.m. But, before that happened, police also shut down the neighborhood around the high school, at 3200 Senter by East Capitol Expressway, as a precaution, Funk said.
The school district notified parents by phone that they could pick up up their children at Sylvandale, Funk said.
At about 1:28 p.m., a police dispatcher received a call that a bomb might be on the high school campus, according to police Officer Albert Morales.
Police had students, teachers and staff locked into the buildings and the bomb squad was called in to investigate, Morales said.
No suspects have been identified and the investigation is continuing, police said.
Friday night’s football game pitting Andrew Hill vs. Leigh High School was postponed until a later date due to the threat.
Bay City News contributed to this report.
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Smith-Hale Middle School, 8925 Longview Rd., was placed on lockdown Friday morning at about 8:30 after a ‘credible threat’ was reported at the school. Shortly after noon, the “all clear” was given and normal school operations were to resume. Police say they never found a weapon.
The credible threat involved reports that a student brought a gun to school; a threat that was posted on social media and was reportedly connected to a fight the day before.
“Allegedly a student says she saw somebody pass something so they started investigating. Now when there are fights in the community, if the parents would notify the schools. Sometimes we don’t find out about things until it comes to the school, so no one had told us,” said Bonnaye Mims, a school board member.
At around 11:15 a.m., the school moved to a “shelter in place” situation rather than a lockdown, and police continued to search the entire building, including students and bags.
Police brought out metal detectors to search each classroom.
Students were “safe and secure in their classrooms” and were receiving “escorted water and bathroom breaks” according to a news release from the school.
“I am very upset. I think it’s ridiculous that our kids can’t even come to school and be safe. I worry every day that I send my kids to school that it could potentially be dangerous for them,” said Stephanie Pierce, a mother with a child at Smith-Hale and another at Hickman. “And because we can’t afford to live in the more upscale neighborhoods, we have to worry.”
Smith-Hale Middle School is in the Hickman Mills School District, which in August, decided to limit metal detector use and backpack searches at some schools because Superintendent Dennis Carpenter said it wasn’t especially useful and frustrates people.
Some parents were upset that metal detectors were no longer in use, but Mims addressed their complaints while she was on the scene.
“If you continue to treat them like they’re criminals, then they’re going to act like that,” Mims said. “We have police still stationed in our schools even though we took them out. But we also had a meeting and called for any parent, all parents that wanted to participate to come and listen to them so that we could make the parents aware.”
Mims said only 25 parents showed up to that meeting about school security.
This is a developing story and FOX 4 has a crew on the way to the scene and will have updates as soon as possible. Refresh this page for new details.