GROVE CITY, Pa. (WKBN) – Grove City College was on lockdown for a short time Tuesday morning as police pursued two armed robbery suspects near the campus.
Police said they responded to Butch’s Salvage Yard on Route 58 around 6 a.m. An employee who was opening for the day was beaten and robbed at gunpoint, police said.
Police caught up with the two suspects near Grove City College. Both suspects fled their vehicle, dropping a gun near Center Street and Main Street. One of the suspects was caught on campus, and the other is still at large.
Campus officials said they locked down the campus and alerted students shortly after the incident began.
“I think the safety and security of our students is our first concern and we followed all of our proper protocols to ensure that was the case, including social media messaging to them in a timely fashion,” Jackie Muller from the marketing and communications department said.
“Yeah, I probably had several emails this morning, several phone calls, and the RA’s were coming around, the RD of the building was coming around just to let us know what was going on, so we were pretty informed through the whole process,” sophomore Luke Vorce said.
The lockdown lasted just a few hours, after which classes resumed. The school’s convocation ceremony, which was supposed to take place Tuesday morning, was moved to Thursday at 9 a.m.
Grove City College issued a statement on the lockdown Tuesday:
Shortly before 7 a.m. this morning, Grove City College Campus Safety became aware of a suspected armed robbery approximately two miles northwest of campus. Shortly after, an unarmed suspect was apprehended on campus and we became aware that one additional suspect may be armed and in the area.
As per our Emergency Operations Plan, Grove City College locked down campus and immediately notified the campus community of the situation out of an abundance of caution.
After extensive consultation with law enforcement, we determined to lift the lockdown at 9:45 a.m. with classes resuming at 11:30 a.m.
We are not aware of any information that suggests students were ever at risk, nor are we aware of the involvement of any Grove City College students or employees.
Grove City College continues to work actively with state and local law enforcement to assist in this matter in any way appropriate to ensure the safety of our students and employees. Going forward, we will continue to maintain communication with law enforcement regarding this matter and will provide an update, if warranted.
As this is an ongoing police investigation, any questions regarding the incident should be directed to the Pennsylvania State Police in Mercer County.
Students are encouraged to speak to on campus counselors, or a member of the Student Life and Learning team members with any concerns.