While El Paso police were investigating Wednesday’s deadly officer-involved shooting, employees at a nearby children’s daycare jumped into action to ensure the safety of their children.
The daycare center is located right across the street from the Pebble Hills Command Center where the shooting took place.
Fabiola Rodriguez is the director of Bright Minds Daycare Center.
Rodriguez says the center was put on lockdown once they heard the gunshots that were fired across the street.
She says the shooting happened while the kids were taking a nap, so the children didn’t know what was going on.
Rodriguez says she immediately informed their parents and that daycare employees even took photos of the children as they slept and then sent the photos to parents just to let them know that their child was safe.
“I gave them instructions over the phone and told them that we were on lockdown,” Rodriguez said. “They know what a lockdown is and that we can’t open the doors and they can’t pick up their kids until the police officers cancel our lockdown.”
Rodriguez says the safety of the children under her care was the number one priority.
“That’s the only thing that me and my teachers were thinking at that moment, to make them secure,” Rodriguez said.
Meantime, Dr.Julio Novoa has an office across the street from the Pebble Hills Command Center.
Dr. Novoa quickly took to social media, posting on Facebook about the shooting and letting his patients know not to come in for their appointments.
“We didn’t know if it was an ongoing hostage situation or something like that so we were just trying to warn people not to come around to this area,” Novoa said.
What surprised Dr. Novoa was that he never thought anything like Wednesday’s shooting could ever happen near his practice.
“One of the reasons why I like being here is because we’re literally right across the street from the police station,” Novoa said. “We’d always joke about it that if we have any problems we just call the police and they can come and help us. It never dawned on us that something would happen right at the police station.”