MASON CITY | A phone alert telling people in Mason City's Highlands neighborhood to stay in their homes Saturday night was done as a precautionary measure, police say. 

Police were called about 9:30 p.m. to a report of shots fired in the 1400 block of North Carolina Place. 

Mason City Police Chief Jeff Brinkley said the department's on-duty supervisor issued a CodeRED alert instructing people in the immediate area to go into their basements. The alert is a phone call with a prerecorded message,

"We wanted to be sure that if additional rounds were fired that they wouldn't hit someone in the area who was unaware of what was happening," Brinkley said via email.

The CodeRED system allows police to send a phone message to targeted areas of the community. It is used locally by Mason City police, Clear Lake police and the Cerro Gordo County Sheriff's Office.

The system gets phone numbers from county data and public records. 

On Saturday, police say the investigation found Darcy Ostercamp, 54, fired one shot outside her home.

Officials were still trying to determine what, if anything, Ostercamp was shooting at and where the bullet went, Brinkley said. 

"We believe that only one shot was fired outside," he said. "We don't know for sure where the bullet impacted, but do not believe there was a risk to property other than her own."

Ostercamp was charged with a single count of misdemeanor discharge of a gun in city limits.

She has been released on bond.

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