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School officials, Law enforcement say social media threats are out of hand

School officials and police agencies said these threats combined with social media are getting out of hand. They say one problem is an old post can be shared sparking new interest in a threat that's already been investigated.

Posted: Oct 29, 2018 6:07 PM
Updated: Oct 30, 2018 3:08 PM

Waay 31 is investigating a series of threats in schools. Just today, police in Muscle Shoals said someone left a note in the high school saying it would be shot up on Halloween. School officials in other districts said they've seen similar threats.

"We take everything seriously. No matter how minor it may seem, we investigate it completely, and we always turn it over to local authorities," said Bill Hopkins.

Bill Hopkins is the superintendent for Morgan County Schools. Last week, he was made aware of a threat circulating social media. While the threat was investigated and found to not be credible, the threat began making its rounds again prompting the district and law enforcement to investigate, again.

"Social media makes things much quicker. It used to be where you had time for maybe an investigation. You know, it doesn't take but one post and then it can be shared very quickly and things can get out of hand very quick."

Hopkins said if parents or students come across a threat on social media or hear of a threat, they should not share it and call authorities instead. 

"It's going to take the community. It's going to take the parents. It's going to take the students. It's going to take all of the educators working together to keep all of our students safe."

WAAY 31 talked to Morgan County Sheriff Ana Franklin who said having to re-investigate threats that are old and found non-credible costs the department time and resources. The student involved in the threat in the Morgan County School District no longer attends school in the system.

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