Drive-by shooting in Phenix City puts school on lockdown

Three people were wounded in a drive-by shooting Tuesday afternoon in Phenix City.

According to Phenix City Police Chief Ray Smith, the three were taken to Midtown Medical Center.

For safety reasons, Phenix City Intermediate School on Railroad Street was put on lockdown.

There were no injuries at the school.

The shooting took place at the Amberwood Apartments at 2504 Stadium Drive.

Police got the call around 12:55 p.m.

The suspect vehicle was described as a blue SUV traveling south on Stadium Drive.

Officers are still on the scene conducting an investigation.

Phenix City Schools superintendent Randy Wilkes said PCIS was put on “hard lockdown” at 1 p.m for 15-20 minutes after a staff member “heard the incident” across the street. Hard lockdown is when no movement is allowed inside the building and classroom doors are locked in addition to all entrances.

Conferring with the police chief throughout the crisis, Wilkes said, PCIS went on “soft lockdown” for another 10 minutes and then the school resumed normal operations. Soft lockdown is when nobody is allowed to enter or exit the building but movement is allowed inside.

PCIS parents and guardians were notified about the lockdown via an automated phone call, Wilkes said, “and everybody is safe.” As for what the students were told, the superintendent said, “11- and 12-year-olds are going to be inquisitive. ... They were just told there was a problem in the community.”

No parents were allowed to check out their children during the lockdown, Wilkes said, but “six or seven” checked out their children after the lockdown was over around 1:30 p.m.

Wilkes praised everyone involved for the way they handled the situation. “I can’t commend the staff, students and parents and law enforcement enough,” he said.

Anyone with information should call Phenix City police at 334-448-2801.

Staff writer Mark Rice contributed to this report.

Larry Gierer: 706-571-8581, @lagierer