PUYALLUP, Wash. – A woman thought to be holding a gun during what turned out to be a false “active shooter” alarm at a behavior health clinic in Puyallup was in fact calling 911 to report the alarm, police said.
The reported sighting of the gun caused some brief chaos around the scene, with multiple law enforcement agencies responding and sending a number of nearby schools into lock down.
But there was no shooting, and no person with a gun, Puyallup Police said.
The ordeal began just before 9:30 a.m. when an “active shooter alert”‘ was inadvertently activated inside the MultiCare Health building at 325 East Pioneer. As people were evacuating the building, one of the evacuees noted a woman in the parking lot holding what she thought was a gun.
As multiple police agencies responded, Stewart Elementary, Spinning Elementary, Kalles Junior High School and the Puyallup school district office all went into lockdown.
Police determined rather quickly no shots had been fired and no one was hurt, but were still searching for the person with the “gun.” They eventually found her inside the Puyallup Library and discovered the woman never had a gun — she was holding a cell phone calling 911 to report the alarm going off and people evacuating from the building.