ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — A number of schools in the Capital Region are reacting to unfounded swatting reports. Most reports are about an active shooter. Schools and Police are keeping the public updated and informed while police investigate.
Albany police department explains they’ve received reports of an active shooter at Albany High School. Police advise the reports are completely unfounded and all students and staff are safe. Saratoga Springs city school district reports Saratoga Springs police received a fake swatting call indicating there was an event at Saratoga Springs High School. The district explains the school is safe with no credible threats.
East Greenbush schools are currently in lockdown as a precaution because of threats made against multiple schools in the area. Police are investigating Columbia high school and suspect this to be swatting as well. A North Greenbush school, Bell Top Elementary received unfounded active shooter reports. Bell Top has been cleared and the school will remain in lockout. Schodack Central School District has also gotten threats. Maple Hill high school is currently in lockdown while Castleton Elementary is in lockout.
Catskill central school district adds to the list of receiving a swatting call related to its high school. Due to the high school being on remote learning, there was no one in the building but police still searched the high school along with middle and elementary schools. Herkimer police got a call falsely reporting an event at the Herkimer Jr./Sr. high school. Other schools in Oneida and Madison counties received the same call.
Troy high school and middle school have also received an anonymous caller reporting an active shooting event. Even though the report was unfounded, Troy police report they searched both the high school and middle school to ensure the safety of the students and staff. Once the search was complete, the schools returned to normal operations for the school day.
The FBI issued a statement regarding these events, “The FBI is 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. 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. We urge the public to remain vigilant, and report any and all suspicious activity and/or individuals to law enforcement immediately.”
Dozens of schools across Massachusetts, including a number in the Berkshires, were also targeted this week with fake phone calls threatening violence. The hoax threat calls affected around 30 communities including Monument Mountain Regional High School in Great Barrington, Pittsfield High School in Pittsfield, and Drury High School in North Adams.