Education

Four central NC high schools step up law enforcement presence Monday after online threats

Posted December 5, 2021 10:39 p.m. EST
Updated December 6, 2021 12:43 p.m. EST

— Four area schools will have added security officers on Monday after threats were made over the weekend.

Garner police will be at Garner Magnet High School following rumors of a threat made against the school. At Lee County High School and Southern Lee High School, the Lee County Sheriff's Office will be present. And in Cumberland County, additional officers were present at Pine Forest High School.

In a message sent to parents, Garner Magnet High School Principal Carter Hillman said he was made aware of various rumors about a threat toward the school on Sunday night.

Hillman said he has contacted Wake County Public School System security and the Garner Police Department, and an investigation was underway.

Parents or students with information about the source of the rumors or the threat were asked to contact Hillman directly.

Hillman said any updates on the investigation would be sent to parents.

Hillman also encouraged parents to remind their students to "not share rumors or perpetuate fear on social media." Instead, Hillman said, students should speak with school administrators or a trusted adult about any concerns.

The additional law enforcement at Garner High follows an increased presence at other schools across central North Carolina from threats.

On Friday, a series of recent threats against public schools increased police presence at Green Hope High School in Cary. Deputies were also looking into a threat found written on a bathroom wall at Western Harnett High School in Lillington.

In Lee County, an anonymous tip line was called over the weekend with a tip about threats to schools.

In a message to families, school officials said the Lee County Sheriff’s office investigated those threats and doesn't believe they are credible.

Lindsay Whitley, associate superintendent of Cumberland County Schools provided this statement:

We are aware of a threat that has circulated on social media regarding possible violence at Pine Forest High School. Upon receiving information, school officials immediately acted and notified law enforcement to investigate. We take all threats seriously. We will have additional law enforcement on campus for the remainder of the day as we continue to focus on providing a safe and orderly learning environment.

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