Sun. May 26th, 2024

UPDATE: A reader has reported that the scene has been cleared by the police. Initially police thought that a large caliber gun was fired near OCSA. However now the school is telling parents that a vehicle had a loud backfire in the area. The O.C. Register also has reported that the backfire was the cause of the panic.

Readers are reporting that there is an active shooter at the Orange County School of the Arts, which is located in downtown Santa Ana.

Apparently the students have been texting friends and family about the situation as well.

Multiple sirens were heard after 12 noon today throughout north Santa Ana. Most likely a multi agency response has turned out at OCSA including the SAPD and likely the OC Sheriff as well.

There was a bomb threat at this school on Jan. 24 of this year. It was phoned in and turned out to be a hoax, according to ABC News.

Two graduates of OCSA have been in the news in recent weeks. Sam Woodward is accused of killing Blaze Bernstein, who was both gay and Jewish. Woodward has been alleged to be a new-Nazi with great animus towards gays and Jews.

Picture by Dan Bouffard
Picture by Dan Bouffard

Two graduates of OCSA have been in the news in recent weeks. Sam Woodward is accused of killing Blaze Bernstein, who was both gay and Jewish. Woodward has been alleged to be a new-Nazi with great animus towards gays and Jews. Woodward is accused of stabbing Bernstein to death more than six years ago and burying his body near a Lake Forest park.

The Orange County Board of Education on Friday, Feb. 17, called for an independent investigation of the Orange County School of the Arts, which faces three lawsuits alleging sexual abuse, according to the O.C. Register.

Here are the three cases filed in Orange County Superior Court:

  • In a lawsuit filed on Sept. 22, a former student alleged that OCSA founder Ralph Opacic sexually assaulted him on campus during the 2003-2004 academic year; the lawsuit names Opacic, the school and the Santa Ana Unified School District, which at the time had issued the school’s charter.
  • In the second lawsuit filed on Sept. 30, a former student alleged he was sexually assaulted from approximately 1991 through 1995, beginning when he was a 14-year-old freshman at Los Alamitos High School. The lawsuit was amended earlier this year to specifically name Opacic, the Orange County School of the Arts and Los Alamitos Unified.
  • A third lawsuit, filed on Dec. 12, accuses Bijon Watson, then the head of the school’s jazz conservatory, of sexually assaulting a former student in 2006 and 2007. Watson was previously charged but ultimately acquitted of criminal charges stemming from similar allegations by the same student. A jury in 2008 found him guilty of three misdemeanor counts of child annoyance, but the convictions were reversed two years later on appeal. Following a 2012 retrial, Watson — a Grammy-winning trumpet player who is no longer at the school — was found not guilty of two counts of child annoyance, and a third count was dismissed. That lawsuit names Watson, the school and Santa Ana Unified.

Coincidentally last Friday marked the 25th anniversary of the Columbine School Shooting. The perpetrators, twelfth-grade students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, murdered twelve students and one teacher. Ten of the twelve students killed were in the school library, where Harris and Klebold subsequently died by suicide. Twenty-one additional people were injured by gunshots, and gunfire was also exchanged with the police.

By Editor

The New Santa Ana blog has been covering news, events and politics in Santa Ana since 2009.

15 thoughts on “Active shooter reported at the O.C. School of the Arts in DTSA”
    1. You clown, don’t go driving towards the report of an active shooter. One of those people terminally in everyone’s way.

    2. Have an acquaintance who works there and they called their spouse saying she was locked in the vault with students

  1. There was some sort of gunfire surrounding the campus – or what sounded like gunfire, very much like a large caliber weapon – so far completely unrelated to OCSA and the police have gave the clear.

  2. What irresponsible and reckless reporting!! Bringing up alleged misconduct from 15-30 years ago and a completely unrelated false threat just in an attempt to sling mud is pretty pathetic. NO ACTIVE SHOOTER!!! Assign a name to your article instead of “Editor”…… so the whole world will know who got it wrong. When I Google the word “clickbait”… sends me directly to this website. What a joke

    1. Thatis called background. Given the allegation of an active shooter it was quite appropriate to dig into recent issues at the campus. OCSA is a great school but they have had their share of drama over the years. Note that their founder’s name has been removed from the school entirely. Funny how you don’t mention that.

      1. Bring up 1990’s unproven allegations and Columbine in regards to a car with a loud backfire? Outstanding effort “Editor”

  3. Yep – Totally false story, with no verifying sources. “I heard . .” “Someone said . . .” Could have written a story about the police searching Santa Ana for a journalist, but being unable to find one.

    A car backfired. Some paranoid person reported hearing a gunshot. Panic ensues – school locks down as police investigate. Matter resolved within minutes, police report to school “nothing to worry about, false alarm, car backfired.”

    So called journalist failed to verify a single fact with any reliable source, and then publishes an unfounded, sensationalist “story” to further fan the flames of paranoia.

    Parents read misleading story, understandably freak out. NewSantaAna reads critical comments, decides to further emulate Alex Jones: “now the school is telling parents that a vehicle had a loud backfire in the area.”

    Again, no active shooter. Never concern of active shooter at OCSA – lockdown due to concern of gunshot in general proximity to the school for safety concerns ecause some paranoid person reported a car backfiring as a gunshot to the police. School responds to police safety requests. Not rocket science.

    1. Actually there was no gunshot. It was a car backfiring. We already noted that in our post.

      OCSA had a responsility to get the facts out and they did not. We stepped in when our readers contactes us and provided what info we could gather.

      We are happy that the incident turned out to be a nothing burger.

      It was interesting to note how much drama the school has been involved in over the years as we did our research for this post. Very unsettling.

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