Deputies arrest armed suspect in Chelsea

Shelby County Schools officials placed Chelsea Intermediate and Middle schools on lockdown and Shelby County Sheriff’s deputies blocked traffic for more than an hour May 17 after an incident near the intersection of Shelby County 47 and Shelby County 338.

Sheriff’s deputies stopped traffic near the intersection of the two roads from about 7:30-8:30 a.m., and the two schools were placed on lockdown until about 9:30 a.m.

The actions came after police responded to a domestic disturbance call near the schools in the Twin Oaks subdivision. When Sheriff’s deputies arrived on the scene, a suspect, armed with a handgun, fled the scene on foot.

At about 9:40 a.m., Sheriff’s deputies arrested the suspect after police chased him through the woods near Shelby County 39. Because formal charges have not yet been filed against the suspect, authorities have not yet released his name.

No children at the schools were directly involved in the incident, and the suspect never entered either school, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

“There is no danger to the schools or the children present at this time, and armed deputies are providing security to the school while we search for the suspect in the woods,” read a Sheriff’s Department press release. “There are no injuries known at this time.”

“It’s just been kind of chaotic this morning with all of the stories we’ve heard,” said Ami Hicks, whose child attends Chelsea Intermediate School.

The incident happened as children were arriving at school, said Shelby County Schools spokeswoman Cindy Warner. All children at school were secured in classrooms, and buses on the way to the school were re-routed to secure locations away from the school campus.

“It all occurred around the time when we had kids being dropped off, so we re-routed buses to secure locations,” Warner said.

Outside of Liberty Baptist Church off Shelby County 47, Tammy Beard and her two school-age children waited to ensure everything was safe before going back to school.

“We didn’t really know what was going on. They told (my son) the school was on lockdown and there was man on the loose with a gun,” Beard said. “We’re about to go back up there and see if they can get back into school.”

The schools have been taken off lockdown.

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