Yakots, the police spokesman, said the first responding officers found the gunman being detained by the staff member in the hallway.
Police said no one was hurt and that there are no additional suspects. They hadn't determined by approximately 2 p.m. whether any shots were actually fired. A firearm was recovered at the school, he added. The students will be taken to the abandoned Sears outlet store parking lot, located at Northeast Sandy Boulevard and 122nd Avenue, to be reunited with their parents.
The outcome was "the best-case scenario, absolutely, " Yakots said. "The staff members from all accounts did an excellent job".
Students interviewed by the newspaper say they were in a government class when a male student entered with a gun but was nearly immediately tacked by Lowe. Yakots did not identify who that faculty member was.
They could not confirm the identity of the staff member, but parents and students told The Oregonian/OregonLive that the staff member who diffused the situation was Lowe. Students were able to flee through the back door of the class and Coach Keanon Lowe was able to tackle the man before police arrived on the scene.
Officers have witnessed a subject with a gun near Parkrose High School. A parent told the Oregonian that the suspect meant to harm himself.
"As I was running, I was just like, Lord, don't let this be it, " Pope told the newspaper.
Lowe was named Defensive Player of the Year in Oregon as a high school student and went on to play four years as a wide receiver for the Oregon Ducks. "Middle school remains on lockout as a precaution", the Parkrose School District said in social media posts. Before that, he worked for his high school alma mater, Jesuit High, where he was a star athlete.
Students, parents and co-workers lauded Lowe's actions on Twitter, calling him a hero.
Olivia Katbi Smith wrote on Twitter that she coaches track with Lowe at Parkrose and wasn't surprised to learn what he did.