Lockdown lifted at Whittemore Park Middle after nearby shooting

CONWAY, SC (WMBF) The modified lockdown at Whittemore Park Middle School was lifted Wednesday morning after a shooting on a nearby street.

According to Conway Police Spokesperson Catina Hipp, Conway Police responded to reports of a shooting at Dillon Street and Maple Avenue in Conway.

Hipp says a male victim was shot at 9:17 a.m. and Whittemore Park Middle School was placed on lockdown as police searched for the suspected shooter.

Police described the shooting suspect as a black male, his hair in dreads, wearing blue jeans and a black hooded sweatshirt.

Bloodhounds were searching the area around the school for the suspect. Police say the shooting is in no way school related. The middle school was placed on lockdown as a safety precaution.

Around 11:25 a.m., the modified lockdown was lifted and police cleared the scene after the bloodhound search team could not pick up a trace of the suspect, Hipp said. Police are still searching for the alleged shooter.

Teal Britton, spokeswoman for Horry County Schools says the school was placed on a modified lockdown because of the shooting and police advised the heightened sense of security.

Britton adds that students will not be outside for recess or physical education and that PASS testing will continue as planned for Wednesday and Thursday. Therefore, parents are advised to not pick up their child early.

Several Whittemore Park parents say the school didn't notify the about the situation near the school and the lockdown until it was over.

"I'm grateful that nothing happened, but I'm still kind of upset that I wasn't notified of this earlier," said James Gagum.

Britton said parents were notified via Facebook, the school's website and a mass messaging system.

The shooting victim, not yet named by police, was rushed to Grand Strand Regional Medical Center. The victim told police that two men approached him as he was entering his home.

Police say the shooting victim was struck by a bullet in the face and in the leg. His condition was not immediately known.

Neighbors say they aren't shocked to hear about the shooting because of past crimes in the neighborhood, but they do want the violence to stop. They'd like to see more police patrols.

"If they get some police to stay on their behinds It'd probably knock down a lot of stuff going on around here," said Valerie Graham.

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