Homeless Florida man entered classroom with knife to ‘test school's security,’ deputies say

Deputies said the incident took place Friday when Derek Marlowe walked into Spruce Creek High School and sat down in a classroom full of students.

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Deputies said the incident took place Friday when Derek Marlowe walked into Spruce Creek High School and sat down in a classroom full of students.

Deputies and school officials in Volusia County, Florida, are trying to figure out how a 51-year-old homeless man who they believe was under the influence of alcohol was allegedly able to walk into a classroom with a knife while it was in session.

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Deputies said the incident took place Friday when Derek Marlowe walked into Spruce Creek High School and sat down in a classroom full of students.

Sheriff Mike Chitwood said procedures were not followed, claiming that school officials are more worried about calling a Code Red and causing a media frenzy than they are about doing what needs to be done.

"They need to understand there is a reason why these things are in place," said Chitwood. "Stop worrying about the perception if we call a Code Red."

According to the arrest report, Marlowe appeared belligerent and said he entered the classroom to "test the school's security." The report said Marlowe accessed the classroom after a student didn't shut the door all the way, preventing it from locking.

The school's principal, Todd Sparger, said the school is evaluating the situation and its response.

Although Marlowe is 51, Sparger said there was some uncertainty about whether he was a student or not when it came to calling a Code Red.

Marlowe's criminal record includes arrests for drug possession and battery. He faces charges of trespassing on school grounds, campus disruption and disorderly conduct for this incident.

>> Watch bodycam footage of the arrest here

Spruce Creek High trespasser

On Friday, a trespasser made it on campus at Spruce Creek High School and entered a classroom while class was in session.

Posted by Volusia Sheriff's Office on Tuesday, October 1, 2019

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