UPDATE DEC. 7, 2022, 11 A.M.-1:11 P.M.
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — Morgantown High School, along with Robert C. Byrd High School, Fairmont Senior and multiple high schools elsewhere in West Virginia, received hoax calls reporting active shooters on Wednesday morning.
The Morgantown Police Department said in a press release that an unidentified man, who was claiming to be a teacher at the school, called MECCA 911 saying that he was a teacher at the school and that seven students in his classroom had been shot.
Police and the Monongalia County Sheriff’s Office responded within two minutes, the release said, and determined that the call was a hoax and there was no threat to the building.
In addition to West Virginia, the police department said schools in Ohio and Kentucky have also received similar “swatting” calls on Wednesday.
“Swatting” is a term used to refer to fraudulent 911 calls that are intended to bring a heavy police presence to a location by falsely reporting that a violent situation is underway. It’s a tactic that has often been used to target people’s homes in an attempt to have them hurt in the process of the police response.
The Morgantown Police Department said it will work with other local, state and federal law enforcement to determine the origin of the calls.
The Fairmont Police Department described a similar situation at Fairmont Senior, and assured parents that multiple police departments responded within three minutes, and cleared the building within a couple more, determining that the threat was false.
It ensured parents that Fairmont has:
- Two School Resource Officers who have received both National Association of School Resource Officers certification and state Prevention Resource Officer training.
- A long history of being in the schools since the 80s with the DARE program which later advanced into the actual SRO program in 2015.
- Fifteen officers certified to give active shooter instruction; active shooter trainers in four different disciplines.
- Instruction in active shooter response through various training opportunities.
- Continued opportunities for the Marion County Board of Education to receive active shooter response training.
- A host of response gear, including breaching tools, Shields, Less-than-lethal, med gear, etc.
- Medkits issued to all officers that include BLS and Tactical Combat Casualty Care (tactical medical) certification.
Click here to read the Fairmont Police Department’s full statement.
According to a post from the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office, Elkins High School was one of the schools targeted and the caller is believed to be located in Kenya.
Our Deputies are monitoring the situation and are ready if anything were to happen in Randolph County. Your children are safe. Thank you.Sheriff Rob Elbon
The West Virginia Department of Homeland Security said schools in Barbour, Cabell, Harrison, Ohio, Kanawha, Marion, Mercer, Monongalia, Raleigh, Taylor, Wirt and Wood counties have all received the threats, but stressed that all calls have been deemed not credible.
There has been a individual from out of state who is calling numerous schools in West Virginia reporting an active shooter. Local Law Enforcement from the Barbour County Sheriff’s Department, the West Virginia State Police and the Philippi Police Department assisted the Barbour County Board of Education to ensure there is no threat here at this time. This incident is under further investigation with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.Barbour County Sheriff’s Department
“Each threat is taken seriously and thoroughly investigated,” Secretary of Homeland Security Jeff Sandy said in a press release. “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.”
This is a developing story. Check back for updates or watch 12 News on air for the latest.
UPDATE DEC. 7, 2022, 10:13 A.M.
CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — Robert C. Byrd High School was one of at least four schools in West Virginia to receive a threat Wednesday morning. That threat ended up being found not credible, Harrison County Schools said.
Marion County Sheriff Jimmy Riffle confirmed that Fairmont Senior in Marion County also received a threat. All schools in the district were put under a precautionary lockdown.
According to the Clarksburg Police Department, the false call reported that there was an active shooter.
Law enforcement has swept the building and found the health and safety of the students and staff were not compromised at any point, according to the Harrison County School District.
Clarksburg Police Chief Mark Kiddy told 12 News that there will likely be an investigation.
The CPD said it is in the process of checking other schools in the City of Clarksburg as a precaution and that it will be doing extra patrols throughout the day to ensure the safety of those in the schools.
FAIRMONT, W.Va. (WBOY) — All Marion County schools were under a brief precautionary “code red” lockdown Wednesday morning in connection to “calls being received throughout the state,” the district announced.
As of around 9:30 a.m., the district provided an update that the schools were back under “code green,” all clear, saying it had been in contact with multiple state agencies and there is no credible threat related to these calls being received throughout the state.
This comes as one call reported an active shooter at South Charleston High School, but Kanawha County dispatchers told 12 News’ Charleston affiliate WOWK that crews on the scene determined that the threat to the school was unfounded and Cabell County 911 also received a call from out of state about an active shooter at Huntington High School that ended up being a “complete hoax.”
Public Service Announcement: A few minutes ago, 911 received a call about an active shooter at Huntington High School. The called was later discovered to have originated from out of state. Officers are on scene and there is no evidence of a shooting or shooter at the school.Barboursville Police Department
The Marion County Sheriff’s Department and Homeland Security are aided in the precautionary code red lockdown.