Police didn't find a suspect after searching Cocopah Middle School near 64th Street and Shea Boulevard for hours on Wednesday morning. A school worker reported seeing an armed person on school property before hours.
Officers say a cafeteria worker called police after she spotted a man on campus with a gun in a holster about an hour and 45 minutes before school started. The woman said the man had long hair, a long trench coat and had a pistol at his hip.
School officials delayed the start of school and asked parents to drop off kids at The Catholic Community of the Blessed Sacrament at 64th Street and Cholla until the campus was cleared.
Children were taken from the church to Chaparral High School, which was on a modified lock down.
"Oh, I was kind of confused -- no real threat I saw instantaneously," said Cocopah Middle School student Boreas Dimitruck.
Another student, Tyler Ojah-Maharaj adds, "They said that we were safe, so I was just hanging out with my friends for a little while -- and my mom picked me up."
"They were really trying to keep us safe and like, okay -- so I think they handled it really well," said C.M.S. student Arden Sanchez.
Parents found out through calls from the school's reverse 911 system.
"They just said that there's something going on -- unknown person -- possibly carrying something -- left in an unknown direction," said Chris Dimitruck.
Officers went through every room on campus and even searched from a helicopter, but never found the man with the gun.
Over at Chaparral, anxious parents lined up to come get their kids -- memories of last week's tragedy at Sandy Hook fresh in their minds.
"I am glad that they had a plan and that my kids felt safe - they did not know any of the external stuff to my knowledge - they did not say anything in their text about it," said Stephanie Haas.
Dimitruck added, "We do everything we can to keep our kids safe -- and we put our trust in our schools to make sure there's nothing going on here."