WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- Alarmed parents besieged a Texas high school on Tuesday after receiving a classroom shooting report that proved to be false.
- Scared students already had made frantic telephone calls to their parents, who rushed to the school.
- The May 24 mass shooting at a Uvalde elementary school was at the top of many parents’ minds.
Worried parents rushed to a Texas high school in San Antonio on Tuesday after receiving a shooting report that eventually proved to be false.
At around 1 p.m. Tuesday, chaos at Thomas Jefferson High School started after police got a call of a possible shooting in progress at the campus, according to a police statement. The school was immediately placed on lockdown as law enforcement arrived and began clearing the campus.
The police found no evidence of an active threat or shooting.
“Our department and San Antonio Police Department established there was no shooting, but then we had to do a methodical search room by room with our strike teams,” said Chief Johnny Reyes of the San Antonio Independent School District police. “We went to the place where they said the shooting had occurred and we were able to quickly establish that no shooting had happened.”
Police found that some students had an altercation, but it did not involve displaying any weapon at any point, Reyes added.
However, alarmed students already had made frantic telephone calls to their parents, who rushed to the school.
School district officers and city police officers arrived at the scene.
At one point, a man shatters a window with a large knife, in an effort to gain entry to the school. Police applied a tourniquet to the man’s lacerated arm. Some parents were handcuffed and detained after physically struggling with officers. No arrests have been reported.
The Jefferson scare was the latest in a series of such incidents as schools across the U.S. were hit with dozens of false shootings and bomb threat reports. The May 24 mass shooting at a Uvalde elementary school was at the top of many parents’ minds.
On Sept. 13, a similar panic occurred in Houston after Heights High School received a threat. School districts near Austin and Houston and in California, Massachusetts, Florida, Arkansas, Oregon, Illinois, Kansas and Oklahoma also received threats last week which prompted school shutdowns.
According to San Antonio district Superintendent Jaime Aquino, the district had to find better ways to communicate with parents in real time. “I’m assuming that if we had not had Uvalde, perhaps we would not have the reaction of the parents. So we just have to understand that,” he said.