LOCAL NEWS

False reports of school shooters prompt lockdowns across Puget Sound

Nov 22, 2022, 12:30 PM | Updated: 12:53 pm
swatting...
Law enforcement and first responders participate in a regional active shooter training. (Staff photo by Derek Davis/Getty Images)
(Staff photo by Derek Davis/Getty Images)

A series of false reports about active school shootings, known as “swatting,” occurred around the Puget Sound region Tuesday morning, prompting school lockdowns and, in some cases, evacuations.

This happened in Thurston, Snohomish, Pierce, Skagit, and Whatcom Counties.

Thurston County Sheriff’s Deputies said the call came in before 9 a.m. that there was an active shooter at Rochester High School. Multiple law enforcement agencies rushed to the scene and swept the building, finding no threat and no one with injuries.

Deputies believe this bogus call is connected to another one at Tacoma’s Lincoln High School on Tuesday.

The Mount Vernon Police Department (MVPD) dispatched to Mount Vernon High School Tuesday morning after receiving a report that multiple students had been shot in a classroom. The MVPD determined the report was a “swatting” incident, and no students were harmed.

Starbucks to close Capitol Hill location after safety concerns

Swatting refers to a hoax call placed to 911 that falsely reports an emergency such as an armed intruder, active shooting, or another critical incident that necessitates a large and immediate response by law enforcement officers and other public safety workers, possibly including a special weapons and tactics (SWAT) team, according to the National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO).

“These false alarms are far from harmless,” said NASRO Executive Director Mo Canady in a press release. “They require high-speed responses with emergency lights and sirens that increase risks for responders and the public. They also divert limited public safety resources from other community needs and increase anxiety among students and others. These are some of the reasons that NASRO and Safe and Sound Schools decided it was important to provide guidance to SROs and school administrators.”

NASRO has even published an overview ahead of the school year on how to deal with and prevent instances of swatting.

Law enforcement is characterizing these swatting calls as “hoaxes,” but the FBI is currently investigating.

“We’re very grateful that they’re so responsive and obviously the response has been pretty consistent from the region,” said Chris Reykdal, the Superintendent of Washington State Public Schools. “It is also deeply troubling that anyone would think this is appropriate or funny or humorous in any way.”

Reykdal advised people to listen to law enforcement school officials instead of any speculation on social media to find factual and accurate information.

Assault and robbery at Marysville coffee stand leads to arrest

Law enforcement officials in South Carolina blamed a TikTok challenge in September for a series of school threats in the state.

“Unfortunately, this is mental health damage perpetrated by someone or some group that is harmful and [required] a huge consumption of law enforcement resources,” Reykdal said. “These are not funny and anyone perpetrating this is doing real damage to young people, educators, parents, and communities. And I hope law enforcement, I know they’ll take it seriously. I hope that if they can find out who was behind this, that there is a full pursuit here to hold them accountable.”

Local News

Capital gains tax Olympia meeting legislature...
L.B. Gilbert

Washington legislators to receive 4-7% raises in 2023

All elected positions, including the Secretary of State, Governor, Attorney General, and state legislators, could be receiving a raise in 2023
10 hours ago
greenhouse gas...
Lisa Brooks

Seattle mayor plans to cut gas-powered cars at City Hall to slash greenhouse gas

Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell has signed an ambitious plan aimed at slashing greenhouse gas emissions across the city.
10 hours ago
i-90...
L.B. Gilbert

Both lanes of I-90 closed again near Cle Elem due to crash, spin-outs

I-90 is closed for the second time in two days after two semi-trucks spun out and are blocking multiple lanes.
10 hours ago
FILE - A Boeing 747-8, Boeing's new passenger plane, takes its first flight, Sunday, March 20, 2011...
Associated Press

Boeing’s last 747 to roll out of Washington state factory

After more than half a century, Boeing is set to roll its last 747 out of a Washington state factory on Tuesday.
10 hours ago
Photo from KIRO 7...
Jesse Jones, KIRO 7 News

DSHS investigating after more than a thousand Washington families’ state benefits stolen by scammers

 Families across Washington are learning the horrible news that their state benefits have been stolen by scammers.
10 hours ago
President Joe Biden speaks in the Roosevelt Room of the White House, Thursday, Dec. 8, 2022, in Was...
Associated Press

WNBA star Griner freed in swap for Russian arms dealer Bout

WASHINGTON (AP) — Russia freed WNBA star Brittney Griner on Thursday in a high-profile prisoner exchange, as the U.S. released notorious Russian arms dealer Viktor Bout but failed to win freedom for another American, Paul Whelan, who has been jailed for nearly four years. The deal, the second in eight months amid tensions over Russia’s […]
10 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
False reports of school shooters prompt lockdowns across Puget Sound