CHARLESTON, W.Va. — There was a heavy police presence Thursday morning at George Washington High School in Charleston as police completed an investigation into a threat found on social media. This comes hours after a mass school shooting in Florida.
“With what happened yesterday in Florida, obviously compounded that. Our anxiety level goes up whenever something like that happens,” said Charleston Police Chief Steve Cooper following the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School Wednesday that left 17 people dead and several others injured.
Police received reports Thursday night that a student told another student he was going to shoot up GW on Friday.
Cooper said the threat may have been a rumor that picked up steam.
“It appears at this point that there was no legitimate threat, that this was likely second hand information that ended up going viral between text messages and maybe social media with some of the students,” Cooper said on Thursday’s “580 Live” with Mayor Danny Jones heard on 580-WCHS, a MetroNews affiliate.
The person responsible for the threat has been identified.
Police want to make sure everyone is safe even after the false alarm, Cooper said.
“With the heavy police presence, hopefully that will calm some nerves. Any type of threat like this, even before we figure out if it’s real or not, we act on. There’s no time to waste in a situation like that,” he said.
Cooper said it’s important to notify police of suspicious activity.
“If there’s someone who’s made threats, take that seriously and please pass it on,” he said.
There will be no charges filed in connection with the GW investigation.