UPDATE: Arrest details surrounding WMHS lockdown released

Local News

UPDATE (9-11-19) — The two men who were arrested at West Monroe High School on Tuesday have had their bonds set.

According to arrest reports for both 57-year-old Matthew Hutson and 36-year-old Theodore Herr, at 10:25 AM an officer at West Monroe High School was alerted by faculty that two possibly armed men were on campus.

The officer was able to locate both of the men within 3 minutes.

The officer states that Hutson was open carrying a 1911 style pistol on his hip and Herr was concealed carrying a 9mm pistol. Both were placed under arrest

When questioned, Hutson told the officer that he was a fugitive recovery agent serving a warrant. Hutson later changed his story, claiming that he was at the school because “his girlfriend’s grand-daughter was selling or possessing drugs.” Hutson claimed he was doing a walk through to see what she looked like.

Herr stated that he believed he was helping Hutson with “fugitive recovery” and thought that the person they were looking for had a warrant. Herr also stated that he knew he couldn’t have a firearm on school property and was “being stupid”.

Both Hutson and Herr have been charged with Unlawful Disruption of a School, Criminal Trespassing, Carrying a Firearm on School Property. Their bond has been set at $6,200 each.

UPDATE (2:40 p.m.) — West Monroe Police have identified the two men arrested at West Monroe High School earlier today.

Theodore Herr (Courtesy: OCC)
Matthew Hutson (Courtesy: OCC)

Police say they arrested Matthew Hutson, 57, and Theodore Herr, 36. Police say Hutson had a firearm visible in a holster. He was carrying a clipboard, and he said he was with a Fugitive Task Force, looking for someone. Herr had a concealed firearm.

Both were arrested without incident. Police say there is no evidence the pair intended any harm.

Below is the full press release from WMPD:

On September 10, 2019 at 1025 hours, the West Monroe Police Department was alerted about an armed white male and another white male with him on the campus of West Monroe High School.  West Monroe Police has a substation at the high school and an officer was present doing a routine walk through.  As a result, the two males were taken into custody within three minutes. 

The suspects were identified as Matthew W. Hutson (w/m; dob: 1/1/1962) and Theodore Christopher Herr (w/m; dob: 3/15/1983).  Hutson had a firearm visible and in a holster.  He was carrying a clipboard and stated that he was with a Fugitive Task Force and was looking for someone. Herr was carrying a concealed firearm.  Both men were taken into custody without incident. 

The West Monroe Police Department, Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office, Louisiana State Police, Metro Narcotics, and Monroe Police Department all responded to the incident.  Each classroom was cleared by a member of law enforcement and WMHS administration.  The school was clear of the lock-down at 1130 hours. 

Based on the investigation, these is no evidence that these men intended on harming anyone.  At no point were the firearms displayed in a threatening manner other than being on a closed campus.  They are charged with LA RS 14:95.2 Carrying a firearm or dangerous weapon by a student or nonstudent on school property, LA RS 14:40.6 Unlawful Disruption of Operation of a Public School LA RS 14:63 Criminal Trespass and are being booked into the Ouachita Parish Corrections Center.

UPDATE (12:35 p.m.) – Two men who told police they were bail bondsmen are now facing trespassing charges and more after a teacher spotted the armed men on the campus of West Monroe High School.

West Monroe Police Department Chief Jeff Terrell says a teacher in Wing 3 spotted two men walking through. She said one had a clipboard. She say a holstered gun on his side.

Police say she immediately notified the main office, who contacted police. There were already several officers on campus since WMPD has a substation on campus. There were also several officers training nearby.

Chief Terrell says they had at least 30 officers here at the height of the incident. There were also police from other local law enforcement agencies including OPSO, Monroe Police, and Louisiana State Police

Once on scene, police located the two men between the votech school and another building. They were taken into custody. Both were armed, and had holstered weapons.

Police say the pair told them they were bondsmen looking for someone. Police are investigating those details. Police also say video surveillance showed the pair were the only two in the car that parked on campus.

After the arrests, per protocol, officers went with school personnel and swept the building, checking every classroom for other potential suspects. None were found. The lockdown was lifted about an hour after it was placed.

West Monroe High School Principal Shelby Ainsworth says no one was hurt. Half day seniors have already been dismissed. Other students can be picked up by parents at the auditorium.

Below is a press conference with West Monroe Police and WMHS’ Principal.

UPDATE: (11:30 a.m.) — According to our news content partners at The News-Star, the lockdown was caused due to two bounty hunters who were on campus.

They report Ouachita Parish Superintendent Don Coker says the pair was spotted by a teacher who saw a gun on one of the men. Police were on scene within two minutes.

CLICK HERE to read The News-Star’s full report.

WEST MONROE, La. (9/10/2019) — West Monroe Police tell NBC 10 two people are under arrest following a lockdown at West Monroe High School this morning.

Students and parents called NBC 10 this morning saying their teens were on lockdown in the school. One viewer says two men who were unauthorized to be in the building were who was arrested.

West Monroe Police could not tell us at this time if the school is still under lockdown.

There have been no reports of injuries.

NBC 10 has a crew on the way to the school.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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