Patients and staff were evacuated Friday from a western Missouri hospital following a report of an armed man there, but authorities said no shots were fired and no one was injured.
Multiple law enforcement agencies responded to the report at the Western Missouri Medical Center in Warrensburg around 9 a.m., Missouri State Highway Patrol Sgt. Andrew Bell said. Ambulances were at the ready. But just a couple of hours later, Bell gave the all-clear.
"It was never an active shooter," he said. "We don’t have any reason to believe there is an active threat."
The Missouri State Highway Patrol said officers later arrested and jailed a man possibly connected to events at the hospital, though it did not explain how he was involved and said he was not even near the facility.
The state patrol first tweeted that it was investigating a report of an armed man at the medical center at 9:03 a.m. The facility tweeted at 9:18 a.m. that the active shooter report came from the medical center’s main building. The medical center has about 50 beds.
"Police on site, and staff and patients being evacuated now," the hospital tweeted. "This is not a drill."
The nation has been on edge because of gun violence. Only four days earlier, a gunman opened fire during a July Fourth parade in a Chicago suburb, killing at least seven people and wounding more than 30. It was the latest high-profile mass shooting, following attacks at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, and a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, in June.
The vulnerability of health care facilities was highlighted June 1 when a gunman killed four people and himself at a hospital in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The assailant entered the Saint Francis Hospital with little trouble, just hours after buying an AR-style rifle, authorities said.
The Warrensburg hospital's spokesperson has not returned a telephone message seeking comment Friday.
The town of Warrensburg has a population of about 20,000 people, and is 60 miles (100 kilometers) southeast of Kansas City, Missouri.