22 Aug 2014
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UPDATE: Adams Police Investigating Report of Stranger on Mars School District Campus

Mars Superintendent sends home letter informing parents of the incident at the district's primary center. Police are reviewing camera footage.

UPDATE: Adams Police Investigating Report of Stranger on Mars School District Campus

Mars Area Superintendent Dr. William Pettigrew said the district is investigating a report that a stranger was walking on the grounds at Mars Area Primary Center along Route 228 in Adams Township Tuesday morning.

In letter sent to parents later that day, Pettigrew said administrators have contacted Adams Township Police about the incident.

“Mars Area School District strives to remain proactive in the protection of its students and employees,” Pettigrew wrote. “The district will keep you informed of any additional information regarding this incident, as it becomes available.”

As of Wednesday, Adams police still are investigating the incident. Police Chief Bill Westerman said a security guard at the school spotted the stranger Tuesday morning and called police.

"My guys were there within less than a minute," he said.

The chief said officers searched the area, including near the Mars Home for Youth on Route 228, but didn't find any suspicious persons.

Police currently are reviewing surveillance video taken from the school to see if cameras captured an image of the stranger.

"We're hoping the video will show us more," he said.

In the wake of Pettigrew also sent a letter to parents Monday reviewing the district’s security measures, which include locked doors, secure entrances and cameras that monitor the interior and exterior of all buildings.

“Building security is present at Mars Area High School throughout the school day and during all evening events,” he wrote. “And, metal detectors are located at the entrance to Mars Area High School.”

Pettigrew also noted teachers and staff review the district’s safety and security procedures on a monthly basis throughout the school year.

Did you hear reports of a stranger on the Mars campus Tuesday? After Friday’s tragedy in Newtown do you think there’s a heightened awareness of incidents in the area? Leave you thoughts in the comment section below.

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