Shots fired near school have parents on edge

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ST. LOUIS (KPLR) – There was alarming news for St. Louis parents picking up their children at Clay Elementary School, Tuesday afternoon.

The few specifics for parents in a letter from the principal were scary enough:  shots fired near the school and a lockdown, just after most of the 162 students had gone home.

The added details FOX 2 learned from police and neighbors made things even more frightening:

One vehicle apparently chasing another near the School near at I-70 and 11th Street, just after 3:30pm Monday afternoon; a tan Lincoln MKZ crashed into at least two vehicles belonging to school staff members parked on 14th Street behind the school.

Two young men ran out of the crashed MKZ with the occupants of white Chevy Impala shooting at them, police said.

The men on foot were dashing between houses with bullets flying, asking residents if they could hide in their homes, residents said.

All this came minutes after Melisa Dukes picked up her 4-year-old son from the school.

“Knowing that my son is only a preschooler and shots being fired, yeah, that is very scary.  I have to walk him hear every day, like 25 minutes.  We literally stay 25 minutes away.  So this is not right,” she said.

“As far as the shooting and all of that, you know after the bullet is fired it could go anywhere, that’s how innocent people get hit,” said father, Matthew Cook, picking up his preschool daughter, Miley.

He said cars speed throughout the neighborhood and around the school, every day.

“Just hearing that just made my chest hurt.  It’s not safe over here,” said grandmother, Sharlene Washington, who was with her daughter picking Washington’s two grandsons from the school.

“My thing is, what happens if it happens again and I have to walk him home, you know walking him back and forth,” Dukes said.  “We probably need police at every corner because that’s just scary.”

There was no word from police on plans for beefed up patrols near the school.

There were no arrests or injuries reported.

Suspected narcotics were recovered in the MKZ, police said.