Keesler was on lockdown, but Gulfport police say no crime has been committed

Keesler Air Force Base
Keesler Air Force Base File

An armed man sought on Keesler Air Force Base on Monday later went to a retirement home in Gulfport, where police say he is not wanted on a criminal charge.

The 81st Training Wing at Keesler issued an alert and tightened security Monday morning, reporting a retired serviceman was believed to be on base and armed.

Alerts dispatched to area law enforcement agencies indicated the man may intend to harm someone.

Bruce Sledge, 52, was believed to be driving a red, four-door truck.

Keesler lifted its base alert and resumed normal activities before noon, believing Sledge was off base, said Capt. David Murphy, public affairs director of the 81st Training Wing.

“There was no active shooter, no active shooter incident,” Murphy said.

Traffic delays were expected, thought, as security officers checked ID cards at the gate, he said.

A caller then told Gulfport police that Sledge had mentioned hurting a family member at a retirement center, Gulfport Police Sgt. Joshua Bromen said.

Police alerted Seashore Highlands, a Methodist retirement community north of Interstate 10 off Mississippi 605. The retirement community was briefly on lockdown.

“The man has committed no crime in the city of Gulfport and he is not wanted on a crime in Gulfport,” Bromen said.

“We notified the retirement home strictly as a precautionary matter.” will update this report if details change.

Robin Fitzgerald: 228-896-2307, @robincrimenews