Online threats made against Granite Falls school, students

GRANITE FALLS — Police responded to Granite Falls High School Wednesday morning after word of a bomb threat spread on social media sites. They didn’t find anything, but they say they’re taking the threat seriously.

Ask.fm is a social media site that the superintendent of Granite Falls School District has become familiar with. Over the weekend, some threats against students were posted on the site, along with a warning that a bomb was going to go off at the high school.

ask“It’s a social media place where people can be anonymous,” School Superintendent Linda Hall said Wednesday. “So we don’t have any names to go on. We do take everything very seriously and we’re trying to keep kids as safe as possible.”

City and county law enforcement were notified, and they searched the school before allowing classes to start Wednesday Now they’re trying to warn the community about this new form of bullying.

“There’s always new sites and we’re always learning how to respond to the new sites coming up,” said Don Lauer, Granite Falls’ acting police chief.

“We did send a school messenger out to parents. So if they’re on our system, they’re getting emails and phone calls,” Hall said. “Those have already gone out.”

Parents can’t believe threats like this are being made in their small town.

“I am super glad I home-school,” said Jenny Hammer, a mother of three.  “It’s scary these days. You can’t tell what’s going to happen, what other kids are going to do.”

Hammer says her 12-year-old son isn’t interested in social media yet. But she’s going to talk to him about what can happen online.

“I’ll leave that decision to him when he’s old enough. But I want to educate him to the dangers.”

Police say parents should monitor their kids’ online behavior. They should also call 9-1-1 if threats are made on any site.

As for this case, they’re going to keep patrolling the schools and talking to students, to find out who’s responsible.

“We’re going to take every threat seriously. We want to make sure students in Granite Falls, at every school, are safe,” said Lauer. “So we’re going to continue to have a presence to make sure we’re doing everything we can to keep them safe.”

Police say if students are threatened online or by text, they should keep those messages. No evidence should be deleted until law enforcement can see it.

They have contacted Ask.fm for help with this case. But the site is based in Latvia and they haven’t gotten any cooperation yet.

4 comments

    • Parent

      There are many students that have been added to the list that are specifically being targeted. My daughter is one of them. They are all in the Freshman class. My daughter was specifically listed. You can bet she will NOT be in school until this is DONE. There is no way I am taking any chance with her safety.

      • Jamie

        I support your decision 100%! No lockdown, nothing. This threat was brought to the attention of the district Sunday evening and none of us parents were informed until yesterday. No SWAT no FBI. Only hourly paid school employees searched the HS this morning.

  • Jamie

    I have a family member that works at the high school and the police department did NOT search the school before opening to students this morning the vice principal and custodian did. Very disheartening with the response to this potential deadly threat. Needless to say my children will lose there perfect attendance award as they will be home with me to ensure there safely tomorrow.

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