Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office says school shooter threat not valid

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 3:52 PM EDT
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SHENANDOAH COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - According to the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office, there have been reports of several school districts in Virginia regarding active shooter incidents.

Shenandoah County Communications received one of those reports regarding Strasburg High School which led to all schools in the county being placed on lockdown.

The sheriff’s office said as of now, there is no information that the call to the school was valid and there was no threat to students. Sheriff Tim Carter said the call came into the county’s 911 dispatch center around 3 p.m.

“The call basically described an active shooter incident in Strasburg High School that was ongoing. So there was some initial confusion there because we had a unit that was actually in the school at the place where this was supposedly happening and it wasn’t happening,” said Carter.

A second similar call came to Signal Knob Middle School around 4 p.m. that was also not credible. Sheriff Carter said the timing of the calls made things even more hectic.

“When something like this happens you’re gonna have a lot of parents that show up at schools and this happened at the end of the day, literally right before kids were about to get on school buses. So of course that adds to the confusion and the stress,” he said.

According to Sheriff Carter, Virginia State Police have released that this is the fifth active shooter call in the Commonwealth today. There are two similar calls in Mecklenburg County, one in Culpeper, and one in Charlottesville.

“These calls all seemed the same and they all seemed to be some type of swatting, or spoofing type of call where at all of the other locations, to my understanding, there was no actual incident occurring,” said Carter.

Carter said that the phone number that made the call was from out of state and could not be connected to when an attempt to call back was made. As of 4:45 p.m. on Monday all students had been dismissed for the day.