MINNEAPOLIS — Fake reports of violence and threats have students and parents on edge across the country, including in Minnesota.
On Wednesday, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said it became aware of multiple “swatting” incidents in schools across the state where fake reports were received of active shooter events or mass casualties.
“No incidents have turned out to be real,” the BCA said.
In the Twin Cities, there were reports of fake threats at Washburn High School in Minneapolis and Johnson Senior High School in St. Paul. Again, no threat or weapons were found.
“Unfortunately, disruptive prank calls such as this have become a national trend. States like Texas, Virginia, and California have reported multiple calls of fake active shooter or mass casualty events at schools,” St. Paul police said.
FBI Minneapolis says it is aware of the numerous swatting incidents.
“The FBI takes swatting very seriously because it puts innocent people at risk,” the statement said. “While we have no information to indicate a specific and credible threat, we will continue to work with our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners to gather, share, and act upon threat information as it comes to our attention.”
Officials with the Rochester school district said Lourdes High School was also hit. There were similar reports from St. Cloud, Bemidji, Cloquet and New Ulm. Some of the schools initiated lockdowns while law enforcement responded.
Anoka-Hennepin Public Schools, Brainerd Public Schools and South Washington County Schools say they have not received fake reports Wednesday.
The Minnesota BCA said that it is investigating the incidents.
“Our Minnesota Fusion Center is tracking these reports and keeping local law enforcement apprised of the situation,” the agency said.