Trespass at Sequim High School leads to brief lockdown

SEQUIM — Sequim High School went on lockdown briefly Thursday morning after a man with a trespass warning appeared on campus looking for his son.

Sequim Police Department Sgt. Mike Hill reported Jason Spaulding, 43, of Port Angeles, arrived at Sequim High School at about 8:25 a.m., went into one of the buildings on campus and knocked on a classroom door, attempting to see his son.

Spaulding was issued a trespass warning in December after causing a disturbance on campus, Hill said, adding that this means Spaulding cannot step foot onto any of the district’s campuses.

The school went on a temporary lockdown and Helen Haller Elementary School, Sequim Middle School and Olympic Peninsula Academy also were on temporary modified lockdowns.

Sequim School District sent out emails and phone calls notifying parents and guardians the schools were on temporary lockdown.

Hill said after Spaulding knew the police were contacted and the school was on lockdown, he left the premises. Sequim police with the help of Clallam County Sheriff’s deputies searched for him but did not locate him.

When law enforcement determined he was not in the area, the lockdown was lifted at about 8:50 a.m.

Spaulding was arrested at 1:15 p.m. at the Clallam County Courthouse where he had business with a pending case for an unrelated matter, Hill said.

He was taken into custody for investigation of criminal trespass first degree and posted bail at $1,000 which he paid in cash.

He was released and his charges for criminal trespass are being sent to the prosecuting attorney’s office for review of charges.

Spaulding is expected to return to Clallam County Courthouse at 2:30 p.m. today.

“Shepherd Shield,” Security Services Northwest Inc.’s mobile app for security threats, had said that Spaulding had a gun and that a SWAT team arrived at the school.

Hill said that was incorrect.

“There is no indication Spaulding was armed at any time nor did a SWAT team respond,” Hill said.

Security Services Northwest Inc. president Joe D’Amico said: “Our protocol is to go with the best information we have.”

D’Amico said that the erroneous information came from a student.

“We take whatever information we get … and relay that back to our subscriber base,” he said. “We always try to verify. We attempted to call the district, but no one was answering the phone.”

The Sequim notification was updated as more information became available, he said.

D’Amico said there is no formal agreement between his company and the Sequim School District to use the app.

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