It was all a mistake, Brooke County school and law enforcement officials have admitted of a "lockdown" of three Follansbee-area schools last week.
But far from being embarrassed, those who ordered the action deserve a pat on the back.
Brooke County Sheriff Chuck Jackson explained what happened by noting his office received a report of a man trying to break into a house last Wednesday. In part because of a home invasion that occurred in the area two years ago, deputies were concerned about the report.
The possibility of a criminal, possibly armed and potentially on the run from law enforcement authorities, prompted school officials to "lock down" the schools. Keeping anyone from entering or leaving schools is a common practice to ensure children are not placed in danger.
But it soon was learned there was no real criminal at large. A homeowner's relative was checking on a house after the wind tripped a burglar alarm there. When neighbors saw the man enter the house, they assumed he was breaking in and called the sheriff's department. Deputies quickly straightened out the misunderstanding.
Good for those neighbors for watching out for their community.
And good for the sheriff's department and school officials for acting quickly to keep students safe.
Better safe than sorry, it has been said in similar situations. How true. Again, good for all involved for taking no chances with the safety of Brooke County school children.