2017-10-05 / Local News

S-B staff aids in arrest of intruder

Criminal charges are being requested by the county Sheriff’s Office against a man who last week walked halfway up the Leelanau Peninsula, then threatened to use a box cutter as a weapon.

The man, whose identify has not been released pending his arraignment, was allowed to enter Suttons Bay Public School as a visitor before producing the box cutter.

“I have zero tolerance for people who walk into a school in a threatening manner,” said county Sheriff Mike Borkovich, who with two deputies responded within minutes to a 9-1-1 call placed at 1:30 p.m. last Thursday.

Borkovich offered praise to Suttons Bay principal Shawn Walbecq and male teachers who convinced the intruder to enter the school’s empty gym. In the meantime, the school was placed on “lock-down,” meaning that doors to classrooms were bolted shut.

“The principal and teachers did an outstanding job,” Borkovich said. “He didn’t put (the box cutter) away. We took it away from him.”

Borkovich said that the suspect walked from his home in Elmwood Township to the school. He was known to have mental illness symptoms, and had been placed in the care of his parents, Borkovich said.

The incident was noted by St. Mary school principal Megan Glynn, who set a new locking schedule for the main entrance of the school. Now the inside front entry door will be locked for most of the school day.

“Guests will need to buzz the office to gain entry. This has been the procedure for the west entrance to the school and will now be the procedure at the north entrance, which is off the main parking lot near the gymnasium,” she wrote to parents.

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