Colonial re-enactment leads to false reports of shots fired at Florence County elementary school

Colonial re-enactment leads to false reports of shots fired at Florence County elementary school
Students learn about colonial America through re-enactors from Camp Flintlock. (Source: WMBF News) (Watson, Nia)

FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Reports of shots fired Tuesday morning at a Florence County elementary school are false, according to district officials.

A press release stated at 8:59 a.m., Florence County 911 received several reports of shots fired at Delmae Heights Elementary School at 1211 South Cashua Drive in Florence.

“I heard a couple shots that sound like gunshots and I heard kids scream,” nearby resident Tiffany Jones said.

Minutes later others said they saw law enforcement flood the school grounds.

“I stood up and I’m saying something’s wrong, especially when I saw an officer with an assault rifle,” Pastor Lacy Gay said.

After checking the area, the reports were found to be false and no children or staff members were in harm’s way, the release stated. There were no injuries.

In an email to parents, school district officials said the elementary school was hosting a history program in which students were learning about life during colonial America from re-enactors of Camp Flintlock.

Velma Wilson, a fourth grade teacher, said the program gives students a unique opportunity while studying history.

“Sword fighting... just a combination of things they would not have a chance to experience on a day to day basis at home,” Wilson said.

Wilson said the cause of the commotion was one of the re-enactors firing a musket to demonstrate the kind of weapons used during those times.

“In no way were we reenacting a war, but they were giving some facts about, you know, what ages children were a part of the military,” Wilson said.

It was a false alarm that was quickly resolved, allowing students to continue with their colonial experience and left parents with a piece of mind.

“You’re looking at children that are now digital natives so they don’t have the experience with it so these are things that I can’t reproduce in the classroom,” Wilson said.

“All the school shootings and the craziness it’s definitely a little more alarming so whenever you hear stuff like that you definitely want to know that your kids are safe,” Jones said.

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