By JAMES BELL
An attempted armed robbery that forced Hays High School to be locked down Friday afternoon has led to three arrests, while one juvenile suspect remains at large.
Police were first alerted to the situation after the report of an armed robbery in the 1700 block of Volga at 2:05 p.m.
The victim reported a knock on the door and at the door found two males wearing hoodies and bandanas at the doorway, according to Hays Police Chief Don Scheibler.
"They asked if a person lived there," he said. "She responded, then they pulled out a gun and told to get on the ground."
She instead closed and locked the door and called the police.
"Officers responded over there and began investigating," Scheibler said. "Patrol began searching the area, with the investigation division, lead by Detective David Gillan."
Due to the closeness of the incident, he said a request was made to Hays High to lock the building to outside visitors, while the school day continued inside.
"I think it's important for the community to know that the school district has a good plan in place. They were able to secure the building and inside the building, you wouldn't notice anything different. But you weren't getting inside that building and I felt good about that. And the patrol division came over there when they released classes at the scheduled time and stood by in the parking lot just to make people feel comfortable.. ... There's a good staff out there and the community should feel good knowing that school district has a good plan in place."
Meanwhile, a delayed report of another burglary was made to the department.
"We got another report of house burglary ... in the 500 block of West 24th St.," Scheibler said. "Officers went over there and learned that earlier in the day, neighbors had heard pounding coming from the house. When they came around the corner they saw two suspects running from the house and saw them get into a silver SUV and drive off."
Arriving officers found the door of that residence had been kicked in, he said.
Investigators determined, the incidents were related.
"Based on the investigation we believe two adults and two juveniles conspired together to go to several locations in town and either steal property from empty houses or rob people of their property," Scheibler said.
Over the weekend, three of the four suspects were arrested on numerous charges, related to the incidents.
Abigail Christine Buchholz, 24, Hays, was arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to commit aggravated robbery, conspiracy to commit aggravated assault, conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary aggravated endangering a child and contributing to a child's misconduct, interference with a law enforcement officer, and other charges.
Ashton R. Herrman, 18, Hays, was arrested on suspicion of aggravated robbery, aggravated assault, use of a deadly weapon, aggravated burglary, aggravated endangering a child, contributing to a child's misconduct, conspiracy to commit burglary and interference with a law enforcement officer.
One minor was also arrested, and the search is ongoing for the fourth suspect, also believed to be a minor.
"I'm very pleased with the Investigation Division," Scheibler said. "They took it with the limited information that we had and they were able to piece this together and quickly identify four people who were not only prepared, but had committed violent crimes in our community.
"It happened on Saturday, and within 24 hours, some of these people were in jail. We had limited information to go on, So I'm very, very pleased with their work."