KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Days after false active school shooter calls across the state, more unsubstantiated threats impacted some schools in East Tennessee on Friday.
The Knoxville Police Department said Friday that some schools in West Knoxville went on a precautionary lockdown due to calls received as a result of a threat posted on social media. The threat did not mention a specific school, police said.
“At this time, there are no known credible threats to any schools in Knoxville,” a department spokesperson wrote on social media.
A Knox County Schools spokesperson said Cedar Bluff Elementary, Spring Hill Elementary, West Haven Elementary, West High, and Knoxville Adaptive Education Center were placed on lockdown.
School Resource Officers and security personnel conducted safety sweeps out of an abundance of caution.
A Knox County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson released a statement that a student received a threat on the app Snapchat. The threat was determined to be a hoax similar to a threat received a in a Florida school system last week.
“We must respond as though every threat is real,” Knox County Sheriff Tom Spangler said in a statement. “We understand it can be alarming to see a large police presence on any school campus. However, we must take the necessary action to protect the students and faculty.”
Jefferson County Schools shared that school leaders and local law enforcement began tracking a threat circulating on social media late Thursday. A post from the school district called it a hoax and said the posts were non-specific and vague.
The district wrote that schools are operating on a regular schedule and local law enforcement is in communication with state agencies.
“The message is circulating through many districts in Tennessee and Florida,” a Jefferson County Schools social media post said.
On Wednesday, schools across the state were disrupted by false active shooter calls. The FBI released a statement that they are “aware of the numerous swatting incidents wherein a report of an active shooter at a school is made. The FBI takes swatting very seriously because it puts innocent people at risk. “