Reports of armed man forces Keesler to lock down

The search is on for the armed man that forced Keesler Air Force Base into a security alert this morning. After the base returned to normal operations, police had to alert a retirement community in Gulfport that the man could possibly be on their campus.
It was no ordinary Monday for a retirement community in Gulfport after a call from police about a dangerous armed man who may possibly be on the grounds. Seashore Highlands Executive Director Rebecca Anderson said, “Immediately locked down our building and the doors and the police were here. There were about five police officers here.”
Authorities searched for 52-year-old Bruce Sledge after Keesler Air Force Base sent out an alert that the retired vet had brought a weapon on base. The threat forced Keesler into lockdown mode, shutting down the gate, causing a backup from the entrance.
When it was unclear if Sledge was still on the base, Gulfport police got a call from a citizen saying the man had told someone he was going to harm a resident at Seashore Highlands. Anderson tells News 25 she took immediate action. “It was a potential threat to our area that someone was potentially coming to our area and they just asked that we go into lockdown mode, which we immediately enforced.”
While the police searched the campus, Anderson made calls to residents. “We notified our independent living villa residents as well so that they were aware of the situation and would stay home or if they were away to stay away until I let them know.”
The lockdown at Seashore Highlands lasted nearly two hours before police said the area was safe. There are about one hundred residents living in the community. “Everything went smoothly as far as the safety of our campus and the way it was followed through and everyone was cooperative,” said Anderson.
A successful first lockdown at Seashore Highlands, but still a puzzling day, a massive search for a man the community’s staff says they’ve never heard of and two lockdowns for a man who police say is not wanted on a criminal charge.

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