By Jeff Vorva
Security officials at Stagg and Sandburg high schools were busy last Friday because of two incidents.
On Friday afternoon, Stagg went into a lockdown after the Bank of America at 10208 S. Roberts Road in Palos Hills was robbed. The lockdown lasted approximately two hours.
Shortly after that lockdown was lifted, Sandburg went into protective mode when a replica hand grenade was found on one of the buses at 3:05 p.m.
Orland Park police said that Sandburg was not on a lockdown, but only students who had parents waiting for them in the school’s parking lot were able to leave.
A student had found what was believed to be a grenade on the floor of a school bus at dismissal, police said. The student immediately gave the grenade to the bus driver who then evacuated the school bus and notified Sandburg staff who then called 911.
“All of the buses were immediately evacuated and the Orland Park police responded and cordoned off the area where the buses were located on the west parking lot of the school,” Cmdr. John Keating said. “Investigators located the grenade on the school bus and, after consultation with the Cook County Sheriff’s Police Bomb Squad, it was determined to be a replica grenade that was considered inert. Investigators took possession of the replica grenade and the investigation continues.”
The other buses were searched, however no other suspicious items were found and students were able to re-board the buses at 4 p.m. — one hour later than their usual time, Cmdr. Keating added.
There were reports that someone phoned in a bomb threat but Keating quashed those rumors, saying there were not verbal or written threats toward the school.