A prank appears to be the culprit behind a strong law enforcement response which locked down an elementary school and frightened residents in a neighborhood near Goleta.
Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Deputies responded to reports of a shooting at a home near Arroyo and Buena Vista, in a neighborhood south of Hollister and east of Turnpike. Vieja Valley Elementary School is located nearby and was locked down while deputies investigated.
The patrol units and an overhead helicopter scoured the area but found no evidence of any criminal activity or wrongdoing.
The original call for help came from a phone with a 261 area code. 261 is not a designated area code in the U.S. telephone system. Online, many contributors to websites on scammers report calls from phone numbers using that same area code number.
The Sheriff's Department has not commented in detail on the nature of the original call for help.
Station journalists on the scene of the incident found law enforcement with guns drawn and streets blocked off. The entire scene was cleared around 12:45 p.m.