Schools increasing security after threats by armed masked man

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Schools are increasing security after a masked man threatened kids. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Schools are increasing security after a masked man threatened kids. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Desert Garden Elementary School borders the apartment complex where the incident happened. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Desert Garden Elementary School borders the apartment complex where the incident happened. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
There was a large presence of adults at the schools nearby. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) There was a large presence of adults at the schools nearby. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
GLENDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

A series of threats by a man wearing a mask and carrying a knife or ax has led to increased police patrols and several Glendale elementary schools taking action. 

There have been four incidents in the past week near 67th and Glendale avenues. The most recent was on Wednesday. Police tell us they got the call around 1:45 p.m., and according to the kids, a tall man with a thin build hopped over a fence into the San Martin Apartments.

[ORIGINAL STORY: Man wearing a mask threatens kids in Glendale neighborhood]

Initial reports indicated that the suspect was also holding an ax. Police say they did find a mask and an ax later in a nearby field. A search of the area was conducted but no suspect was caught. No kids were hurt.

"We were able to locate the mask and the ax, but unfortunately, we weren’t able to apprehend any suspects," said Sgt. Scott Waite with the Glendale Police Department. 

Wednesday’s incident was the fourth in the past week.

"We definitely are concerned that there's possibly someone out there trying to hurt children," Waite said.

Desert Garden Elementary School borders the apartment complex. The incidents being such close proximity to the school has Glendale police beefing up patrols as kids arrive in the morning and are let out in the afternoon.  

Jim Cummings, a spokesman for the Glendale Elementary School District, said the district has sprung into action as well with all hands on deck. 

“We had a very heavy adult presence around our school. You could see it. It was teachers, it was district office administrators, it was administrators from the schools. We were out on the streets making sure that our kids got to school safely today,” said Cummings. 

The district office was fielding calls from concerned parents. Cummings said that is common when anything regarding the safety of kids is involved. 

Cummings said the large adult presence was taking place at three other schools as well that are in the vicinity, Smith, Desert Spirit and Challenger. 

Meanwhile, Glendale police said they have very few clues to go on regarding the suspect in the case. They have submitted the mask and the ax they recovered Wednesday to the crime lab for analysis. 

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