UPDATE (11:12 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 7): The West Virginia Department of Homeland Security released a statement regarding hoax threats about school shootings in the state.
They say that false threats were made in Barbour, Cabell, Harrison, Ohio, Kanawha, Marion, Mercer, Monongalia, Raleigh, Taylor, Wirt, and Wood counties.
The Randolph County Sheriff’s Office said that Elkins High School was also included among schools receiving threats.
“Each threat is taken seriously and thoroughly investigated,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Jeff Sandy. “We are one hundred percent committed to continuing to ensure the health, safety and well-being of students and communities. We diligently work across departments and agencies to respond, monitor, and investigate these alleged threats.”
The FBI Pittsburgh office released the following statement regarding the threats:
“FBI Pittsburgh is aware of the numerous swatting incidents wherein a report of an active shooter at a school is made. We are working alongside our law enforcement partners in identifying the source of the hoax threats. Due to the ongoing investigation, we are unable to provide more details. However, it is important to note that law enforcement is going to use all available resources to investigate a school threat until we determine whether it is real or not. Investigating hoax threats drains law enforcement resources and diverts us from responding to an actual crisis. Hoax threats can shut down schools, cause undue stress and fear to the public, and cost taxpayers a lot of money; not to mention ruin the future of those making the hoax threats as they’ll likely have a criminal record, like the student featured in this video. We urge the public to remain vigilant, and report any and all suspicious activity and/or individuals to law enforcement immediately.”
WEST VIRGINIA (WOWK)—At least four schools in West Virginia are on alert Wednesday morning after police say that a caller reported active shooters to 911.
One of the calls reported an active shooter at South Charleston High School, but Kanawha County dispatchers say that crews on the scene determined that the threat to the school was unfounded.
The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Office is classifying this as a swatting incident.
Kanawha County Schools say that South Charleston High School is open and operational and will be open on Thursday.
Barboursville Police say that Cabell County 911 also received a call about an active shooter at Huntington High School. They say that call came from out of state.
Police are still on the scene at Huntington High School, but Cabell County Schools say that the incident was a “complete hoax.”
Cabell County Schools announced that, due to the hoax, the Huntington High School state championship football celebration assembly has been canceled. It will be rescheduled at a later date.
13 News’ Clarksburg affiliate WBOY reported that Robert C. Byrd High School in Clarksburg also received a threat Wednesday morning that was found not credible. They also reported that all Marion County schools were placed under a precautionary “code red” lockdown due to “calls being received throughout the state.”
This is a developing story, and we will provide more information as it becomes available.