Suspect in custody after manhunt closes Williamson Co. schools - WSMV News 4

Suspect in custody after manhunt closes Williamson Co. schools

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Jeff Vaughn Jeff Vaughn

It wasn't the weather or a flu bug that kept tens of thousands of kids out of school Monday in Williamson County.

Instead, it was the violent actions of a school system employee that prompted officials to cancel classes.

Deputies arrested Jeff Vaughn late Sunday after he was accused of firing a shotgun at his wife and children earlier in the weekend.

Vaughn, a maintenance worker with Williamson County Schools, had keys to every school in the district but is now jailed on $900,000 bond.

"I think this is just something that happened in the spur of the moment," said Vaughn's aunt, Beth Ladd. "I guess we all have that happen to us once, you know, in our life."

Police say Vaughn fired a gun at his wife and children at their home on North Chapel Road on Saturday. He then ran off before deputies arrived.

Last week, the man's wife had filed an order of protection against her husband, saying he is "extremely angry."

Director of Schools Dr. Mike Looney said the decision was made to close schools before Vaughn was apprehended in order to err on the side of caution.

"Not that we thought there was a threat to our schools. We didn't necessarily think that. We were just being proactive and protective of our most precious resource, our students," Looney said.

But, because Williamson County had already announced schools would be closed by the time Vaughn was arrested, the system said the logistics of trying to open schools Monday and get word to parents of the change would have been too difficult.

Williamson County Schools operated extended care Monday on a snow schedule.

Vaughn faces charges of reckless endangerment, aggravated assault, violation of order of protection and aggravated burglary. His court date is set for March 6.

Looney said schools will be open as normal on Tuesday.

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