Sheridan schools closed Thursday as manhunt for suspects continues

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SHERIDAN, Colo. -- All schools in Sheridan will be closed Thursday because suspects involved in a violent crime spree remained at large, Superintendent Michael Clough said Wednesday night.

Police are still searching for three or four suspects still on the loose after two people were shot and another person was assaulted during a carjacking Wednesday morning.

Sheridan police said the suspects were involved in a crime spree that began with a bank robbery before progressing to a carjacking and multiple shootings. One person, 28-year-old Miguel Sanders Jr., was taken into custody.

A perimeter had been set up that bordered South Federal Boulevard on the east, West Oxford Avenue on the south, South Lowell Boulevard on the west and West Mansfield Avenue on the north, but it has since been scaled back.

Officials are closing the schools to be on the safe side. Parents and children are on edge.

It began at the First Bank building at West Jewell Avenue and South Kipling Parkway in Lakewood around 10:40 a.m., police said, when a group of black male suspects locked employees in a vault before making off with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Police said the suspects were wearing masks from the movie "Scream," similar to those used in another Lakewood bank robbery at a US Bank at 1414 Carr St. in late September.

A photo of the two suspects who robbed a Lakewood First Bank on Nov. 18, 2015 were released later in the day. (Photo: FBI)

A photo of two suspects who robbed a Lakewood US Bank in late September 2015. (Photo: FBI)

Shortly after the First Bank robbery on Wednesday, police said the same suspects were involved in a carjacking in the 6800 block of West Eldorado Place. During the process of stealing the vehicle, police said the owner of that vehicle was shot and was transported to a hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries.

The suspects abandoned the vehicle near a bus barn a short distance from Sheridan High School (3201 W. Oxford Ave.). A short time later, a second victim was shot and a third was assaulted for unknown reasons, police said. Both were transported to hospitals with nonlife-threatening injuries.

All Sheridan schools along with Mullen High School were placed on lockdown. The nearby Sheridan Municipal Building was placed on lockout and a nearby recreation center was cleared. Littleton Public Schools said all of its buildings were temporarily placed under a secured perimeter.

As of 2:45 p.m., Mullen indicated it was releasing students but advised parents to remain in their vehicles when picking up their kids.

Shortly after 3:30 p.m., Sheridan Schools indicated students at the Early Childhood Center and Alice Terry Elementary School would be released directly from those buildings, while Sheridan High School and Fort Logan Northgate students would be bused to St. James Church (3601 W. Belleview Ave.), where parents could pick them up.

Parents of all Sheridan students were required to show identification to be reunited with their children.

SWAT teams were going door to door in the neighborhood surrounding Sheridan High School searching for the suspects. Police expressed concern because of the expansive scene, as well as its proximity to Fort Logan Mental Health Center, which has many large buildings.

As far as leads, police indicated some clothing they believe belonged to a suspect was found in the bus barn at Sheridan High School.

Several police officers from the Denver, Lakewood and Sheridan police departments were near the Sheridan Municipal Building searching for the suspects.

Law enforcement from the Jefferson County and Arapahoe County sheriff’s offices as well as the Denver Fire Department were also at the scene.

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