A robo-call by the Emery School District was issued last night alerting parents of the closure of all Emeryville schools and recreational facilities today. The reason for the closure was said to be an anonymous ‘threat of violence against the safety of students and staff’ and the closure was being issued as a safety precaution.
Emeryville Police Officers were on site at the ECCL to explain the closure to the few parents that did not receive the alert. Emeryville PD Captain Michael Allen was leading an investigating into the threat.
Please advise. ALL ECCL school & recreational facilities will be closed today.
— Emeryville CSD (@EmeryvilleCSD) April 9, 2018
The sudden closure left parents scrambling for alternative plans for care for their kids or forced to arrange time off from their employers. The nature of the threat was not initially disclosed setting off speculation by parents.
One source noted that the threat was most likely part of bogus hoax being circulated online. Schools in Southern California were also affected by threats with The Daily Bulletin noting a vaguely sourced threat to “blow up a school and shoot students’.
Local and federal investigators concluded that the threat lacked credibility and may be tied to an online hoax last month that led to the evacuation of hundreds of United Kingdom schools last month. “We are monitoring social media and are seeing schools in Alameda County and others around the country reporting similar threats,” note the EPD in a subsequent community advisory. The hoax apparently originated within the online gaming community.
The #FBI is working with our local law enforcement partners to determine the validity of the reported school threats within our area of responsibility. At this time, they appear to be part of a larger influx of threats and they do not appear to be legitimate.
— FBI SanFrancisco (@FBISanFrancisco) April 9, 2018
The EPD will be stepping up patrols of the area as a precaution. “As an additional resource for the school, the Emeryville Police Department will leave officers in place for the remainder of the day and to assist with the re-opening of schools in the morning”.
Schools are expected to reopen tomorrow and resume their normal schedule.
Since this is breaking news, we will update this post as new information becomes available.