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WSU police ready for storm that disrupts Xenia graduation ceremony

Published: Wednesday, May 24, 2017 @ 10:16 PM
Updated: Thursday, May 25, 2017 @ 10:30 PM
By: Will Garbe - Staff Writer

UPDATE @ 10:30 p.m.

Wright State Police said they were not taken by surprise Wednesday night when severe weather forced the lockdown of 3,000 people at the Nutter Center for the Xenia High School graduation ceremony.

Campus police said they had been monitoring the weather and had plans in place.

“The individuals that are on the floor, they move over to the McLin Hallway. The people that are on the upper seating area we request that they come down to the lower area,” said WSU Police Chief David Finnie.

Police helped move people to safety until the storm passed.

A funnel cloud was spotted over Fairborn. There were no injuries, but there were downed trees and power lines in the area.

FIRST REPORT

About 3,000 people were locked down at the Nutter Center after the Xenia High School graduation ceremony as severe weather barreled toward the arena.

>>VIDEOS: Rotating clouds near CedarvilleFunnel and lightning spotted

Funnel cloud over Fairborn

Doug Cope, the leader of Ohio Task Force One, called NewsCenter 7 to describe what was going on inside the arena.

“At about 8:10 (p.m.) they made an announcement for all the students on the floor to egress back to the backstage area, and this was because of the large monitor that hangs over the floor for basketball games,” Cope said. “They were telling folks to stay off the concourse area because of all the glass doors.”

Right then, NewsCenter 7’s James Brown gave a dire warning.

“Please tell the folks not to go outside, it’s headed right toward you,” Brown said.

There were no injuries reported.