Schools Locked Down; SMHS Student Found at Mall With Gun

A 15-year-old San Marino High School student who was reported missing early Tuesday was found hours later with at least one gun at a shopping mall in Arcadia, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
The student, who lives in an unincorporated area near Pasadena, was reported as “critically missing” Tuesday morning. According to the Sheriff’s Department, the alert was of “moderate severity,” meaning he was a “possible threat to life or property.”
All four of San Marino Unified School District’s schools were locked down Tuesday as the San Marino Police Department assisted the Sheriff’s Department in the search. According to SMUSD, the schools were locked down “as a safety precaution only.”
The teen was found at the Dave & Buster’s at Westfield Santa Anita Mall in Arcadia at around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, according to KTLA-TV. His family said two firearms from his father’s home also were missing this morning and they feared he might have them. The teen was carrying a firearm when found, although the Sheriff’s Department did not specify by press time whether it belonged to his father.
The Outlook is not identifying the boy because he is under age and was not charged with a crime as of press time. Officials initially released his information while the search was ongoing.

San Marino School District Superintendent Alex Cherniss sent an email to parents today following a district-wide lock down that occurred while authorities searched for a missing San Marino High School student.

The student was found at Westfield Santa Anita Mall in Arcadia at around 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, with at least one gun.

Below is the text of Cherniss’ email:

Dear Staff, Parents, and Community Members,

As much as we practice, we cannot simulate a real life event like we had today. However, the practice and preparation for such an event that we’ve so rigorously trained for over the past several years clearly showed today. Our top priority as a school district is to ensure the safety and security of our students. Today, I made the decision to lock down the schools out of an abundance of caution. This decision was supported by our School Board and local law enforcement.

The professionalism of our staff, the leadership of our principals, and the dedication of our students ensured a safe environment for everyone at our schools. Our District was in constant communication with the San Marino Police Department, the San Marino Fire Department, and Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Our San Marino Police Chief, John Incontro, stationed a team of officers at our high school during the entire day. Additionally, we had SMPD at Carver, Valentine, and Huntington Middle School. Staff and Parents were sent multiple email and mobile app notifications throughout the day. Principals were in constant communication with each other and with the District Office.

Most importantly, I offer my sincere admiration and thanks to our teachers, counselors, and office staff for your amazing efforts. Our students felt safe and were safe throughout the day.


Alex Cherniss, Ed.D.
Superintendent of Schools
San Marino Unified School District

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