False information about gunfire at Wakefield campus made by students, district says
Posted December 5, 2019 11:04 a.m. EST
Updated December 6, 2019 10:58 a.m. EST
Raleigh, N.C. — A Code Red lockdown was issued for the campus of Wakefield high school, middle school and elementary school in Raleigh Thursday morning after a report of shots fired nearby.
According to a spokesperson from Wake County Schools, students called 911 saying shots were fired near the football field in the area of Wakefield Pines Drive before 10:30 a.m. The school confirmed that no shots were fired on campus, and the lockdown was downgraded to a code yellow for the elementary and middle schools by 11:45 a.m.
In a message sent to parents Thursday evening, the district said the whole event was a hoax.
"The investigation found that students were responsible for this phone call, and that the information provided in the phone call was false," the message said. "There was never shots heard in the neighborhood. There was never any threat to students or staff at Wakefield High School, or any school. As with every threat made this year in Wake County, this hoax threat was made with the sole intent to disrupt our campus."
Although the high school was still under a code red at 12:30 p.m., officials said there was no threat on or around campus. The lockdown was removed from all campuses by 1 p.m.
Soon after the lockdown was issued Thursday morning, WCPSS sent a message to parents confirming that all students were safe and explaining the lockdown was a precaution.
Raleigh police said someone made a false call to the school and that no shots were fired.
In a code red lockdown, the building is locked, and no one is allowed to enter or exit. In a code yellow lockdown, students stay in their rooms with their teachers and normal classroom activity resumes.
Parents were getting texts from their children Thursday morning – some frightening and some reassuring.
"It's really amazing that these kids have to go through this," said a mother waiting for a text from her daughter. "Knowing that this would be an upsetting situation, the first thing she said to me was, 'I'm okay, but there's a code red.'"
A father said his frightened son texted him saying he couldn't leave and asking what he should do.
"I told him he had to sit tight," the father said.
"My oldest son texted me and said, 'Mom, mom, where are you,'" said his wife. "It's just your worst nightmare."
A senior at the high school talked to her parents on FaceTime while she was huddled in the locker room with about 50 other students.
"I've been talking with my parents this whole time," she said.
Some students decided to leave school for the day after the frightening false alarm.
"I'm not going back to school for the rest of the day," said one freshman.
This story will be updated.