High school locked down because of suspicious man

Columbus ISD schools will have heightened security Thursday, official says

COLUMBUS, Texas - A Colorado County high school was placed on lockdown on Wednesday after a suspicious man wearing an odd ensemble went inside.

Colorado County sheriff's deputies said the man was spotted on surveillance video walking into Columbus High School, 103 Cardinal Lane, about 10:45 a.m.

A staff member approached him, but he didn't identify himself, investigators said.

"The person didn't respond, kept walking, so we went into lockdown and notified law enforcement," Columbus Independent School District Superintendent Robert O'Connor said.

Students were moved out of the classrooms to the cafeteria while investigators searched room to room for the man.

Student Lexi Leopold said at first she didn't know if there was a real problem or if it was just a drill. Within a few minutes, her teacher received an emergency message and Lexi and her classmates were told to hide and be quiet.

"I thought of dying, so I was like I got to text my mom and dad and tell them I love you," Lexi said.

Other schools in the district were also locked down as a precaution.

The lockdowns were lifted about 12:30 p.m., after detectives determined that the man was not in any of the schools.

A detailed description of the man has not been released, but officials said he was wearing pants, a long skirt and a bonnet over his head.

According to Robert O'Connor with Columbus ISD, there have been a few reported sightings of the suspect, but authorities did not find him by Wednesday night. As a result, an officer will be at every campus in the district Thursday.

"With all the horror stories, you don't know if that's a rouse and someone is somewhere else to enter the building, so we took every precaution," O'Connor said.

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