Crawley College incident: Mother of pupil praises 'commendable' work of staff and police

A mother of a Crawley College pupil praised the work of college staff and the police following an incident at the school on Monday.

Staff and pupils at Crawley College were evacuated by Sussex Police after there were reports of shots being fired on campus. An 18-year-old has been arrested.

Lorraine, who did not want her surname published, said she received a text message from her 17-year-old son Bradley saying there had been an incident at the college but he was fine.

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And Lorraine praised the ‘commendable’ staff at Crawley College and the police for making sure Bradley was kept calm and safe.

Firearms police at the scene. Picture by Eddie Mitchell

She said: “I think it was about quarter to four, my dad said to me he was off to pick my son up.

“I looked at the clock at about 4.30 because I asked them to go to Tesco to pick a couple of bits and pieces.

“I would’ve normally expected them home at just after 20 past four, but naturally I appreciated that I had asked them to go to Tesco on the way back. But then I looked at my phone and my son had sent me a message.

"He was doing a mock maths exam. He was in the new section of the campus and he said he heard noises but he didn’t think anything of it because he had his mind on his work.

“A lovely lady called Tracey took care of the students. She locked the classroom door and I said to my boy, because I’m South African, this is nothing unusual, just stay on the floor.

“The same lady that Bradley said was with him, and a couple of the other students, stayed with him the whole time.

“They were then led out by the police with their hands up. I never thought I’d say my son has been taken away by the police with his hands up!

“She stayed with Bradley and when he phoned me from the police station I could hear her in the background.

“It was very commendable. Hats off to them because a lot worse can happen. Thank God it didn’t.”

Lorraine said she would like to see increased security measures at Crawley College following the incident.

She added: “It opens your eyes a lot to appreciate every second because you don’t know when the last is going to be.”

“My heart goes out to everybody. You’re there for a purpose, you don’t go there to be harmed.

“It’s meant to be safe. Personally I’d like to see an electric gate or stuff like that. If you have that, if you’re not part of the campus then you’re not allowed then.

“This should be a lesson that these things happen and that more security is needed. But that is a personal point of view.

“We just need to hope and pray something like this never happens again.”

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