Gowanus Lounge: Serving Brooklyn

Slope School Locked Down After Bank Robbery

June 19th, 2008 · 10 Comments

The Astoria Federal Savings Bank at 10th Street and Fifth Avenue was robbed today, which led to what at first appeared to be an evacuation of MS 51 on Fifth Street and Fifth Avenue a short time later. (It was later noted that many students were outside at the time of the incident and the school was subsequently “locked down.”) There were reports of helicopters hovering over the neighborhood and someone at the 78th Precinct told a skeptical OTBKB that is was “routine training.” Photographer and GL Contributor Nate Kensinger, who was in the neighborhood shooting photos, offers a first-hand report:

They evacuated MS 51 on 5th ave/5th street after the bank up the street was robbed – the Astoria Federal Savings on 10th street and 5th avenue. One of the bank robbers was caught but the other was loose and they thought he might have been around the school… after yesterday’s gunman/evacuation up in cypress hills, I guess the police are edgy. A helicopter, motorcycle cops, atf agents, undercover cops, meter maids…They all converged on the school. More cops then I have seen in a while. all the kids were out on the street, running around, crazy. Anyhow, quite a scene.

Some “training.”

Tags: Crime · Park Slope · Uncategorized

10 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Ann Fern // Jun 19, 2008 at 7:27 pm

    hi i’m a student from ms51 and the school was not evacuated it was on lock down! We were outside for lunch, we had to stay in our homeroom with the doors locked while the cops searched our school, we were all freaking out! it was so scary! When we were outside it took 2 minute for the whole JJ burns park to be filled with students and cops helicopters, police cars, and motercycles surounding the school and old stone house! Kids filled the streets and ran after the police to see what was going on! We had to go in 10 minutes early and sty in our homerooms for about an hour. There were three guys one was caught one hid n a car and one was circleng our buildng. When we were heading inside he knocked down my friends trying to run away they all were armed with gums the man in the car all most hit me driving full speed trying to get away! there were rumors spread around the whole school saying they entered the school and had bombs and such. we found out they only had guns and had not entered the building. even though it was still scary. it was over 1000 kids freaking out because we didnt know what was happening. But the teachers kept us calm and quite while we waited for anouncements from our princeble Ms. Berner. And also they robbed commerce bank and it’s Ms.51 not Ps.
    Bye, I hope this helped you with your scoop!

  • 2 Justine // Jun 19, 2008 at 7:55 pm

    My son’s in the sixth grade at the school. While M.S. 51 was searched, my understanding is that the school was not evacuated. The kids stayed in their classrooms while the police conducted the search. This is what my son told me and what a note sent home said.

  • 3 MS51 dad // Jun 19, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    It was not evacuated it was locked down for the last 40 minute period of the day

  • 4 MS51 dad // Jun 19, 2008 at 11:27 pm

    It was not evacuated it was locked down from 12:30-1:30pm

  • 5 Nathan Kensinger // Jun 20, 2008 at 2:33 am

    When I approached the school, many dozens of students were on the sidewalk. Shortly thereafter, they were ushered back inside. Perhaps the entire school was not evacuated, however, many students were outside on the sidewalk. Also, the media and the police on hand both referred to the event as an evacuation.

  • 6 brigid // Jun 20, 2008 at 7:52 am

    I am a student at m.s.51. and it was extremely scary. Although, we didnt evacuate, we stayed in our home rooms. we all had to sit against the lockers, while we called our parents.

    also, another frightening thing that occured, was when me and my best friend, were pushed, while the suspect went running by. i was quite worried.

    I beleave this has been the most tramatic incident in my life, ever.

  • 7 Richard // Jun 20, 2008 at 7:09 pm

    It wasn’t sacry everyone in my homeroom was playing tix tax toe in was funny^_^

  • 8 aly // Jun 21, 2008 at 4:32 pm

    it was so scary but exciting because anything could have happened

  • 9 aly again // Jun 21, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    i acually called my dad cops were every were during lunch all i could think was someone could get shot. Now its kind of scary outside

  • 10 Brandon // Mar 13, 2009 at 11:58 am

    It was me in the picture with the long hair. and the robber passed me while i was running. And i dipped into the school. The my mom came to pick me up and they wouldnt let her in the school. So i dipped outside and i got my mom and then we hopped on the 63 and went home. There were also some scared kids that ran home (JOHN SPINELLI) because supposively they saw the robbers with guns in the basketball courts.