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Officer Robert Schlenvogt of the Jamestown Police Department walks across the campus at the University of Jamestown Thursday with Gary Van Zinderen, dean of students, during a lockdown as officials search for a student. (John M. Steiner / The Sun)

Police: Student detained after allegedly threatening students

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A lockdown at the University of Jamestown was lifted about 11:30 a.m. Thursday after police took student Robert Flores into custody. The lockdown was issued about 10:45 a.m. after Flores allegedly threatened specific students and then went missing, said Scott Edinger, Jamestown police chief. No one was injured in the incident, and the students who allegedly were threatened have been followed up with.

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Police and university officials have not elaborated on what exact threats were made.

Robert  FloresFlores was found on First Street West in downtown Jamestown after police searched on and off campus. He has been cooperative with police while in custody, Edinger said.

The incident is still under investigation, but there is no continuing danger, Edinger said.

Flores, 18, has not yet been charged, and Edinger said Thursday that police will probably communicate with the Stutsman County State’s Attorney office sometime today.

“It could range from no charges, to disorderly conduct, to terrorizing,” Edinger said. “Really all the details are kind of scattered at the moment.”

Flores started at UJ this fall as a business administration/communications major after being signed to the wrestling team, according to the Jimmie Athletics website.

He’s from Thousand Oaks, Calif., and was named California Interscholastic Federation’s Most Outstanding Wrestler.

The Jimmie wrestling roster online currently does not list Flores on the team.

Last month in Jamestown, Flores pleaded guilty to consumption of alcohol by a minor, according to court records.

This was UJ’s first campus lockdown, said Polly Peterson, vice president for advancement and business affairs at UJ.

Students were informed of the lockdown through a string of emergency emails and text messages.

“We had reason to believe there were concerns for the safety of our campus,” Peterson said.

Students said that while the situation was scary, the emails and texts were helpful.

“Honestly, I probably wasn’t very scared because the professors were quick (at informing us),” said junior Markelle Kudrna, who had been in class at the time of the lockdown. “It made me feel safe I guess.”

Sophomore Emma Bellmore also said being in class made her feel safe during the lockdown. It was scarier for some of her friends who were alone in dorm rooms, she said.

“It wasn’t terrifying until we got the email that they were looking for a specific person,” Bellmore said. “Then it just became real for me.”

She and other students stayed in contact with friends and family through texting during the lockdown, letting them know they were safe, she said.

Senior Alannah Dosh had been alone, working in a ceramics classroom when the lockdown was issued.

She said she wouldn’t have even known about the lockdown if a professor hadn’t been checking classrooms and found her.

“The professors did a very good job,” she said.

None of the students interviewed knew Flores.

Both Dosh and Kudrna said it was scary to have the lockdown shortly after students were warned of an unrelated incident with the possibility of an armed man on campus earlier this week.

An intoxicated Jamestown man was on UJ campus Sunday evening and allegedly told a student he was armed, prompting campus security to alert students and Jamestown police.

The man had no weapon when he was taken into custody Sunday and will not face state charges, Edinger said.

“It’s strange that it happened in the same week,” Dosh said. “It’s been a crazy week.”

Reporters Keith Norman and Kari Lucin contributed to this report. Sun reporter Charly Haley can be reached at 701-952-8455 or by email at chaley@jamestownsun.com

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Charly Haley
Charly Haley covers city government for the Grand Forks Herald. As night reporter, she also has many general assignments. Before working at the Herald, she was a reporter at the Jamestown Sun and interned at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead, Detroit Lakes Newspapers and the St. Cloud Times. Haley is a graduate of Minnesota State University Moorhead, and her hometown is Sartell, Minn.
(701) 780-1102
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