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Fort Mill school on lockdown after police suspect crashes near campus, officials say

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A school in Fort Mill was on lockdown Thursday morning after a suspect police were pursuing crashed into a tree near campus, officials said.

The driver was under the influence, police said.

The incident happened around 9 a.m. near the entrance to Springfield Elementary School on Springfield Parkway, according to S.C. Highway Patrol troopers and York County Sheriff’s Office deputies.

A suspect being sought by police crashed into a tree near the campus entrance, said York County deputies and Joe Burke, spokesman for the Fort Mill school district.

No students or staff were hurt or involved, Burke said.

School officials placed the school on lockdown for about 10 minutes, until the situation was determined to be safe, Burke said.

“The incident was not school related but the school was locked down out of an abundance of caution,” Burke said.

Peter Olinger, principal of the school, sent out an email message to families of students at the school after the lockdown was lifted. The message stated that Fort Mill Police Department officials advised the school to go on lockdown “until it was safe to return to normal.”

The incident began around 9 a.m., said Trent Faris, spokesman for the York County Sheriff’s office.

“Deputies attempted to stop a car on U.S. 21 in Fort Mill after numerous witnesses called in and said the car was driving erratically and tried to pass an 18-wheeler truck on a double yellow line,” Faris said.

A deputy stopped the car on U.S. 21 at Springfield Parkway, Faris said. As the deputy approached the car, the driver sped off down Springfield Parkway, Faris said.

“The driver of the car drove off the road and crashed into a tree at Springfield Elementary School,” Faris said.

Police identified the driver as Diamond Barrett, 28. Barrett was transported for medical treatment, Faris said.

Deputies are expected to charge Barrett with driving under the influence, driving with a suspended license, having an open container in a vehicle and failure to stop for clue lights, Faris said.

Check back for updates.

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