Unidentified man tried to gain access to Southold schools Wednesday afternoon

Southold Town Police responded to a call from Southold school officials Wednesday afternoon after an unidentified male tried to enter the high school and elementary school buildings, police Chief Martin Flatley said.

“There was no arrest and no crimes committed, just a suspicious person,” Chief Flatley said in a statement to The Suffolk Times Thursday. “Our school resource officers conducted a follow-up investigation this morning and shared information with our other school districts.”

School superintendent Anthony Mauro sent a message to school families notifying them of the incident Wednesday evening.

Initially, the individual attempted to enter the high school building through the main entrance and was denied entry as he would not provide identification.

The subject said he was on the property to watch a basketball game. He reportedly continued to look for the game after he was told it wasn’t happening until later in the day. The school security staff called the police department as the individual was leaving campus.

The person then walked to the elementary school and tried to gain access there as well. He was met by a security guard and left the property. Southold police later identified the man and interviewed him. At the school’s request, police informed him that he wasn’t permitted back on school property.

Mr. Mauro said that although the safety practices the school has in place worked well, the incident “emphasizes the need for diligence when making our schools safe.”

“The Southold Police Department responded immediately and has continued to be present at our schools,” he said. “We unfortunately live in times where we need to keep our doors closed and locked to keep everyone safe.  We are committed as a school district to be as safe as humanly possible.  We are always grateful for the police and community support and understanding.”

With Steve Wick