While investigating gun threat, police find 10-inch knife inside Ambridge HS



AMBRIDGE, Pa. - Police were called to Ambridge High School Wednesday morning after the message "I have a gun" was found written on a rest room wall.

Beaver County emergency dispatchers said the school was placed on lockdown and several police officers and K-9s responded to investigate.

"The message was, ‘I have a gun,’” Ambridge Police Chief Jim Mann said.

While sweeping the building, authorities found a 10-inch kitchen knife in a 15-year-old student’s backpack, officials said. That student was pulled out of school, and it’s believed the knife was not related to the initial gun threat.

“A very thorough search was conducted at the school. Every locker, every book bag and every student was wanded with the metal detector,” Mann said.

Authorities lifted the lockdown after about 90 minutes when they ruled all students were safe and there wasn’t a threat.

“We are very, very fortunate and blessed that as soon as this incident occurred, the staff member reported it and police responded immediately,” superintendent Dr. Cynthia Zurchin said.

While the school was in lockdown, several concerned parents showed up at the school. Channel 11’s Amy Marcinkiewicz reported Zurchin went outside and filled them in on what was going on.

“I have a 16-year-old in there now. That’s my concern -- to get the kids out and keep them safe,” one parent said.

On April 9, a student at another suburban school, Franklin Regional High School in Murrysville, was charged with attempted homicide and aggravated assault after he allegedly used two kitchen knives from his home to stab 20 students and a security guard.