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Athletes hit the dirt during Franklin High gun scare

by: David F. Ashton Many Portland Police Bureau officers converge on Franklin High in response to a 9-1-1 call about someone with a gun, parking their cars near the football field.

Family and fans in the stands at Franklin High School were enjoying the scrimmage on the athletic field in the crisp fall air on Thursday, October 6.

But then, right about 6:45 pm, someone yelled 'Gun!'

Coaches shouted 'hit the dirt!' - and players dove for the turf, while people on the sidelines and in the stands ducked.

A 9-1-1 call brought Portland Police Bureau (PPB) East Precinct district officers into the school's parking lot, on the east side of the school, nearest the sports field.

'Officers arrived in the area, and learned that two teens nearby had had an argument, and that one of them flashed a gun at the other,' reported PPB Public Information Office Sgt. Peter Simpson.

'Some witnesses described hearing a gunshot,' Simpson noted, 'but, based on the officers' investigation, there was no shot fired.'

Early reports were that the officers had an idea of who the suspect might be, and began looking for that individual, as well as the weapon he had allegedly brandished.

'Officers recovered the handgun and placed it into evidence,' Simpson said afterward. '15-year-old Kenneth McGee was taken into custody. McGee was charged with Menacing, Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, Disorderly Conduct in the Second Degree, Pointing a Firearm at Another, and Possessing a Loaded Firearm in Public. McGee was taken to JDH.'

When the commotion died down, game play resumed. All seemed grateful that no one was injured in the incident.