AURORA, Colo. — Smoky Hill High School in Aurora was evacuated Friday afternoon because of an isolated hazardous materials situation, the Aurora Police Department said on Twitter.
Aurora Police spokesperson Chris Amsler later said students saw someone with a backpack containing a “suspicious powder” near the high school around 10:45 a.m. Around 1 p.m.
Officers detained a 14-year-old male student and they were talking to his parents late Friday afternoon.
The substance was determined to be corn starch and harmless.
“Detectives and fire investigators discovered that the suspect was trying to ‘blow a fireball’ which is the act of blowing corn starch into an open flame to cause it to flare up,” a statement from Aurora Police said Friday night.
The Aurora Fire Department Arson Investigations Unit took over the case.
Emergency responders searched the building and found nothing dangerous. They gave the all-clear Friday afternoon.
If students need to retrieve their personal belongings, they can return to the building through the Activities entrance tomorrow, Saturday, April 19:
– Juniors and seniors from 8:00- 9:00 a.m.
— Sophomores and freshmen from 9-10:00 a.m.
Normal activities at Smoky Hill High School were expected to resume Saturday beginning with swim team practice early in the morning.
Twitter activity during the incident
ALL AFTER SCHOOL ACTIVITES ARE CANCLED. PRACTICE, TOE JAM, ETC—
ClarenceBuff SHHS (@ClarenceBuff) April 18, 2014
Smoky Hill being releases for the rest of the day. Walkers will leave first. Drivers second. Bus at Laredo. No one back in the bldg today.—
SmokyNow.com (@SmokyNow) April 18, 2014
This story will be updated as more information becomes available.