IOTA — A 21-year-old Basile man was arrested Tuesday after he allegedly walked into Iota Middle School wearing a Halloween mask while armed with four knives and a hatchet, an official said Tuesday.
The masked man, later identified as Garrett West, entered the school through the south entrance wearing khaki overalls, a white Halloween mask, a black wig and a belt around the waist, which held the knives and hatchet, the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office said in a news release.
Principal Debra Siebert approached the man and persuaded him to remove his mask and surrender his weapons, the release said.
Siebert recognized West as a former student of Iota Middle School, the release said. A motive has not yet been determined, said Maxine Trahan, spokeswoman for the Acadia Parish Sheriff’s Office.
“He did attend Iota Middle when he was young and had good memories there,” Trahan said.
The incident prompted officials to order a lockdown of the middle school and Iota High School, which is on the same property, Trahan said.
Both schools resumed normal class activities shortly after noon, about an hour after the incident occurred, Trahan said.
A call to the school was not returned Tuesday afternoon.
West was arrested on two counts of terrorism, two counts of carrying of a dangerous weapon on school property and two counts of unlawful disruption of a school, the news release said.