Evanston police responded in force Friday to a report of a potentially suicidal person with access to weapons.

The police asked Evanston School District 65 to place all schools in the district on a soft lockdown Friday afternoon.

The police department issued the request after responding around noon Friday to the incident in the 900 block of Michigan Avenue.

That location is about a block from Lincoln Elementary School.

Update: Police announced at 6:35 p.m. that the 900 block of Michigan Avenue was secure. But police said the investigation was continuing.

An ambulance called to the scene. (Jeff Hirsh photo)

About 2:20 p.m. the police decided to lift the soft lockdown requests for all schools except Lincoln, Park, Nichols and Chiaravalle. They again stressed that there is no active threat to the schools, that the lockdown was a precautionary measure.

District 65 says that except for Lincoln, Park and Nichols, all district schools are resuming normal operations and students will be dismissed at the regular time.

The district says the students at the three schools will stay on soft lockdown because “we do not want students traveling home until the police give us the all-clear.”

Evanston Now’s Jeff Hirsh, at the scene, spoke with Elvir Bajric, who has two children, ages 7 and 10, at Lincoln.

Bajric said he’s been told students there won’t be sent home at the usual 3:30 p.m. time because of the ongoing situation.

Bajric says he found today’s incident “concerning,” especially due to recent levels of crime in the area — including the theft of his Kia, which was recovered on the south side of Chicago with 200 extra miles on the odometer.

At 3:40 p.m. a public address system announcement to parents standing outside Lincoln School indicated that dismissals would begin shortly, on a grade-by-grade basis. And police said they would have officers stand by during dismissals at the four schools that had remained on soft lockdown.

At 2:35 p.m. police said the emotionally disturbed person was suspected to be barricaded in an apartment building in the area of Michigan and Main and that in addition to police, representatives from Trilogy Behavioral Health were on the scene.

Shortly before 2 p.m. a Fire Department ambulance was called to the area of Lee Street and Sheridan Road in connection with the incident.

But police say no one has been shot, the incident is not an active shooter situation and that there are no known injuries.

The police said the schools are not under a “shelter in place” directive and that the soft lockdown is being done just as a precautionary measure.

Police and fire units on Sheridan Road near Lee Street. (Jeff Hirsh photo)

School Superintendent Devon Horton, in a message posted on the district’s website, says all students and staff are safe within the school buildings and that “this incident is not connected to any of our schools.”

Horton says during the soft lockdown all doors will be secured and entry and exit will not be allowed. Parents and caregivers will not be able to pick up their children while the soft lockdown is in effect and recess will be held indoors, but students and staff are able to move throughout the buildings.

Police squad cars blocking traffic. (Jeff Hirsh photo)

Police Cmdr. Ryan Glew says no threats have been made against Evanston schools and the soft lockdown is a precautionary measure as police search for a potentially emotionally disturbed person.

He says police do not believe there is any immediate threat to the public at this time and a shelter-in-place order for the general public has not been issued.

Several streets in the area of southeast Evanston east of Chicago Avenue and between Main and Dempster streets remained blocked to traffic for much of the afternoon.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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