Man arrested for entering a San Antonio elementary school

No students or staff members were harmed after the man gained access

SAN ANTONIO – A San Antonio elementary school had a security breach when a student let an unknown man onto their campus Wednesday. All Highland Forest Elementary students and staff are safe, and the suspect was arrested.

“He (the suspect) was unarmed. No students or staff were harmed, or threatened with harm,” East Central Independent School District spokesperson Brandon Oliver said. “We believe that the male is a homeless individual in the area.”

Oliver told KSAT that the suspect climbed a fence, went to the back of the school and began knocking on a door. A student leaving the restroom heard the knocking and opened the door for him.

A district officer confronted the suspect after a few minutes, Oliver said. The suspect then ran from the school and was arrested at the La Parrilla Mexican restaurant across the street.

“We didn’t know what to expect because, you know, we don’t know if he has a gun or anything,” said Emma Plascencia, a manager at La Parrilla. “It was a moment of rush and adrenaline.”

Staff at La Parrilla said the suspect walked into the restaurant, went to the restroom and ordered a glass of water. Moments later, five to 10 officers arrived in the parking lot. When officers arrived, restaurant staff members said the suspect surrendered to authorities.

Oliver said they believed the suspect was trying to cut through the school. The suspect is now facing charges of trespassing and evading arrest.

“It could have been a lot worse, but the good news is that the staff acted extremely quickly,” Oliver said. “We will continue to retrain our staff and our students on our safety protocols and procedures.”

East Central ISD’s 2022 bond has funds allocated for non-scalable fencing at Highland Forest Elementary. District staff told KSAT they hope to have it installed within the year.

About the Authors

John Paul Barajas is a reporter at KSAT 12. Previously, he worked at KRGV 5 in the Rio Grande Valley. He has a degree from the University of Houston. In his free time, he likes to get a workout in, spend time on the water and check out good eats and drinks.

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