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Parent says doors into school left propped open, unattended

Posted at 10:10 PM, Feb 28, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-28 22:12:14-05

Photos sent to Four in Your Corner by a parent show doors into a Lee County school propped open with no one standing guard. The parent who sent the photos said on two different days, the doors were left open and unattended for at least 15 minutes.

The photos were taken at Orange River Elementary last Wednesday and this past Tuesday.

"Since what happened in Parkland, I don't feel safe. My stomach's like, when I leave him at school, I feel my stomach all twisted," Karen Rivera said. 

Her 6-year-old son, who goes to Orange River Elementary, has also been scared since the school shooting in Parkland.

"I don't want to die," Benji said. "The gun made me scared."

In the wake of the Parkland school shooting, security at her son's school has been at the top of Rivera's mind. When she saw the photos of the door propped open at Orange River Elementary, she was worried.

"It doesn't feel safe. I don't feel safe," Rivera said.

The parent who sent the photos said last Wednesday, the door was propped wide open at 3 o'clock and was open for 15-20 minutes with no one guarding the door.

"It's not good if there's no teacher there," Robert Branham, whose grandson goes to the school, told Fox 4.

The parent then took another photo at 3 o'clock Tuesday. He said the door was already open when he pulled up and stayed open for 15 minutes after he got there.

"It's unsafe. Shootings, somebody could go inside, shoot the school, shoot his classroom," Rivera said.

"It's not a good thing with everything that's going on with all the schools," Branham said.

A Lee County School District Spokesperson said the parent spoke with the Principal Tuesday.

"When they went to check they realized a piece of the door had broken off which caused it not to shut all the way. They called the building supervisor and it was immediately fixed. We appreciate the parent who let us know so the problem could be immediately addressed and are thankful that our parents are helping to watch over our students and notify us when they see something that concerns them."

But the parent who sent the photos said they clearly show the door was propped open.

"I hope it gets resolved. I don't want anybody to come. Crazy people, you know?" Rivera said.

Branham said the open doors are not an every day occurrence. He's never seen them open before, and typically there's a teacher standing by the door.