‘Unique start to our day:’ Man found in Loretto Elementary School classroom before students arrive

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Police responded to Loretto Elementary School in Mandarin when a man was found sitting in a classroom early Tuesday morning before students arrived.

Allen Perry, 47, was arrested by Duval County School Board police for trespassing on school property, according to a Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office incident report.


It happened before any students were on campus when staff arrived at the school to open the school for Extended Day, according to a message that was sent to Loretto Elementary School families.

Perry was standing in front of the school and “wandering around the front area asking where he was,” the JSO incident report said.

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A staff member asked if they could help Perry and he “pointed at a back door to one of the classrooms and started mumbling,” the report said.

The staff member was “freaked” out by this, so she went to get a colleague. When they came back, they saw Perry standing inside the classroom he was pointing at earlier.

One of the staff members “yelled” at Perry to leave the room, “and he walked out but was still on the property.”

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Perry would not identify himself, but was later identified with a fingerprint scanner and taken into custody.

Here is the full message that was shared with parents about the incident:

“Hello Loretto Elementary School families, first, I want to assure you that all students and staff are safe. Again, all students and staff are safe. However, we have had a unique start to our day, and I want to make you aware of what happened on campus very early this morning. Shortly after 7 a.m., police were called to the campus as staff members were arriving to open for extended day. Police were called because a person, who appears to be a homeless man, came on to the campus as we were opening the building and was found sitting in a classroom. JSO arrived quickly and took the man into custody. He was never in the presence of students and did not have any weapons or anything of that nature. As you know, whenever we have a disruption like this, I want to make sure you are informed. I am very thankful to law enforcement for their swift action and support, and we are continuing on with our school day as normal. I’m looking forward to a great day of learning here at the school, and I hope you all have a great day as well.”

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Amanda Winkle

Amanda Winkle, Action News Jax

Amanda Winkle is the digital content manager for Action News Jax.

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