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‘Really close to here:’ Active shooter at Miller Brewing put businesses, schools on lockdown

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MILWAUKEE -- Many businesses and schools located near 41st Street and State Street were impacted by the shooting at Miller Brewery on Wednesday, Feb. 26 that left five employees dead. Police said the shooter, a Milwaukee man, 51, was found dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound at the scene.

MPS lockdown

A Milwaukee Public Schools' spokeswoman said Story School was placed under lockdown shortly after police responded to the shooting just after 2 p.m. The spokeswoman said, "All students and staff are safe and in the school building." They were asked to stay in their last period classrooms, and text alerts were sent to students and parents. As of 3:45 p.m., they were not allowing parents come to the school building to pick up students and were not allowing any students or staff leave the building. In an update around 4 p.m., the spokeswoman said parents could pick up their children, and buses were available to take students home, but no students were being allowed to walk home.

"It's really concerning, too, because it's really close to here, only a few blocks down," said Saul Ramirez, student.

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MUHS lockdown

Marquette University High School was also placed on lockdown. Students were escorted to their parents by staff. An all-clear was given before 4 p.m.

"We put our school on lockdown immediately," said Scott Rudie, spokesman for Marquette University High School. "We told students to hold in place. We were at the end of the school day, so rather than dismiss our students at 3:10, we told them to hold in place."

WHS lockdown

Officials with the Wisconsin Humane Society posted on social media they were placed under lockdown as a result of the incident. That lockdown was lifted as of about 4 p.m. Wednesday.

WHS spokeswoman Angela Speed told FOX6 News that clients, volunteers, and staff gathered together at the centermost part of the building during the lockdown, and all volunteers who were walking dogs were brought inside.

"I'm incredibly proud of our team, and we were able to get communication out to our staff, to our clients through our intercom system," said Speed. "We do have safety protocols. Fortunately, we've never had to use them before, so it was a first for us, and we'll be evaluating it in the future -- that we can make any improvements, and also, on our social feeds, we did ask initially that all staff, volunteers, and clients remain on lockdown with us at the center of the building, but we did let the public know that we could not force them to stay. They could leave at their own risk, but we welcome them to stay, and we brought out some water and refreshments to make people comfortable."

Speed said it was the first lockdown at WHS.

"Your adrenaline just kicks in, fortunately, so you can have a fast response, but it is kind of scary, and several of our staff and volunteers are shaken up a little bit, but our hearts go out to the staff at Molson Coors," said Speed. "It's just such a tragic situation, and we're here to help in any way that we can."

Help for those in need

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The doors were opened Wednesday evening at Global Outreach Ministries near 26th Street and Vliet Street for those who were unable to immediately return home due to the large police perimeter and ongoing investigation. People in need were invited to escape the cold -- with beverages and snacks provided.

"When I got to my house, began to look at the news, and just felt compassion, and I started thinking about the individuals who may not have a vehicle, and they're not able to access their home, and/or individuals who may be on the bus, and not able to access their home," said Shauntay Nelson with Global Outreach Ministries.

The group gathered in the sanctuary to pray for those who lost their lives at work on Wednesday -- and their families.

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