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Albany College Campus Gun Scare

There were some tense moments Thursday on an area college campus.  The College of Saint Rose campus in downtown Albany was locked down for close to an hour after someone reported seeing a gunman enter a school building. School officials released a terse text alert, and many students took to Twitter, worried that more bad news was imminent.

It began around noon in Albany's normally tranquil Pine Hills. Police blocked off a perimeter that covered the area between Partridge to Main Street and Western to Madison Avenue after an elderly passerby flagged down a police car along Western Avenue to report he had observed someone carrying a rifle into the college's Events and Athletic Center. Steve Stella, St. Rose's director of safety and security,  told WAMC the school erred on the side of caution and followed all procedures by the book.

The lockdown was canceled just before 1 p.m. Since the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007, campuses nationwide have been increasingly vigilant about alerting students when campus safety is in question.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.