The Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office arrested a 38-year-old man after he tried to grab several children at Wineteer Elementary.
That man, later identified by local media as Tyler DeBarea, was seen walking school grounds near a parking lot and playground at approximately 11:40 a.m. Tuesday morning.
After being scared away by building staff, local media reports indicate he departed the scene and stole a pickup truck from base housing.
Reports indicate he then crashed the stolen truck into a gate at McConnell Air Force Base in southeast Wichita. He ran from the site of the crash before later being detained and arrested by Sedgwick County authorities near 3800 S. Webb Road.
The Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office arrest records indicate DeBarea was arrested for battery, criminal threat and kidnapping.
Local authorities identified five victims that were either seven or eight years old. No children were hurt.
The district first sent the following message to parents:
“An unknown individual was seen on the playground, behaving erratically and attempted to grab a student. The family of the student has been notified. Staff were monitoring students closely and responded immediately, bringing the students into the building. Local law enforcement are on the premises and receiving assistance from McConnell Air Force Base personnel in locating the individual. Due to these circumstances, Wineteer is on a lockout which will continue until the situation is resolved.”
Principal Yvonne Rothe later sent an update that indicated the lockout had been lifted.
"This is Mrs. Rothe and I wanted to let you know that our Lock Out has been lifted and we are returning to normal school business. All students and staff are safe and accounted for. An unknown intruder, unrelated to to Wineteer, approached our playground. Quick actions by the staff caused the intruder to leave the area. He has now been apprehended by police. Thanks for your patience and know that your child's safety is our utmost concern."
Stay with derbyinformer.com for more information on this developing story.