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Balloon popping project at technical college brings armed police in search of shooter


LA CROSSE, WI (WTAQ) - Police descended on Western Wisconsin Technical College late Thursday after somebody thought they heard gunfire. Students were evacuated, as officers stormed classrooms in search of a gunman. Other police stood guard with assault rifles.

Turns out the "gunfire" was actually a bunch of balloons that were being popped for a class project.

Police took one final sweep of a building before calling the operation off.

The La Crosse Tribune said students have a heightened awareness of danger on-campus, especially in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombings.

Since then, police responded en masse to reports of guns at UW La Crosse and Carroll University in Waukesha.

It turned out that the gunmen had an empty weapon at La Crosse, and a relatively harmless air-soft gun at Carroll.

Still, police have no regrets for responding as they do.

They say it’s better to err on the side of safety.