Incident in Forest neighborhood puts local schools on brief lock down

FOREST, Va. (WDBJ7) - Bedford County deputies are still searching for two people they say reportedly robbed a Forest home Wednesday.

The incident put several schools in the area on lock down.

"I mean, we've not had any issues so, very surprising to come home and see this," said Christie Wiley, looking across the street to her neighbor’s house.

Wiley said on Wednesday she was working as a substitute teacher at Forest Elementary School when it was temporarily put on lockdown.

She had no idea that what put them on lock down was happening in her own neighborhood of West Crossing.

"And then I drove up and I saw all this,” she said, motioning to the house across the street home with officers out front. “And then I went on Facebook just to see if I could find anything about it and I saw the article, what had happened."

Bedford County Sheriff’s Office officials said in a statement that someone in a home on West Crossing in Forest called 9-1-1 around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The caller told deputies two armed black males came into the home wearing ski masks. The caller then said the men took their safe and left in a gray SUV.

The caller said one of those men was wearing a gray jacket and the other wore a yellow jacket.

Deputies put five local schools on a perimeter lockdown while they searched the area, including Jefferson Forest High School, Forest Middle School, Forest Elementary School, Thomas Jefferson Elementary School and New London Academy.

"No one was alarmed just because you never know it could be anything that it was put on lockdown for,” Wiley said.

The lockdown was lifted around 2:20 p.m.

Bedford County Public Schools posted the update on Facebook writing, "We are thankful to report this was a quick one."

Several neighbors tell us this is a quiet neighborhood filled mostly with professional people.

It’s part of the reason why Wiley said what happened here is so surprising.

"I mean knowing that these things can happen in a safe neighborhood where you think is perfectly safe and this is a kind of wake-up call that it may not be,” she said.

Deputies declined an on-camera interview Wednesday night. But in a statement officials ask the public for any information on this case. Those with information can report it to the sheriff’s office or anonymously through CrimeStoppers. Tipsters can receive up to $1,000 cash reward.