Three Monterey schools were on lockdown on Thursday after a reported sighting of a group of males with rifles, police said.
The incident started at 2:12 p.m. when an employee at Walter Colton Middle School reported the possible sighting in woods near the school. The males were last seen near Quarry Park, police said.
Nearby Monte Vista Elementary School also was put on what police officials called "shelter in place" status. Students were not allowed to leave classrooms and no one was allowed to enter the campuses.
In addition, the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District said Monterey High School was on lockdown.
While officers searched the woods near the schools with the assistance of Seaside police dogs, some parents were prevented from immediately picking up their children after school.
A city spokeswoman said police found no evidence of anyone in the area with a gun.
"Things are returning to normal," she said.
The lockdown order was lifted at 3:32 p.m. At Monterey High, the lockdown ended a few minutes earlier.