All Beaverton School District schools in lockout after district receives threat
BEAVERTON, Ore. – The Beaverton School District directed all schools to go into a lockout Wednesday after the district received a "a veiled threat of violence involving a gun" on social media.
"This is a precautionary measure for all schools today and to ensure the safety of our students, staff and community," the district wrote in an alert on its website.
In a lockout, schools operate normally inside the building, but all perimeter doors are locked. For students in portable buildings, all transitions will be supervised by adults. Parents who wish to pick up their children should check them out at the school office.
After classes ended for the day, the district released details about the threats they received.
The first threat came in late Tuesday evening via their Facebook account. The threat was reported to the Washington County Sheriff's Office and Beaverton Police Department.
The following morning, staff at the Westview High School front office received a call at 7:15 a.m. from someone who said "you all will die."
After reporting the threat to authorities, district officials decided to put all school buildings in a lockout.
Shortly before 9 a.m., another threat was posted on the district's Facebook page - this time including a link to a photo of a firearm. Analysis of the image traced it to a European media station, and it was taken back in 2012.
At about 11:30 a.m., an email was sent to all 43 administrators within the district that threatened violence at a middle school in Beaverton. Police are looking into where the email came from. The server that the sender used has been previously linked to threats of violence at other school districts.
Beaverton police and the Washington County Sheriff’s Office said the threat is similar “in context and content to postings occurring in Oregon and nationally." Police say these other threats have been investigated and determined not to be credible. These other threats were sent from locations outside the Beaverton area and investigators believe they were sent to disrupt the community and cause fear.
Police say in the threats to Beaverton School District, there was no specific targeted school or building (aside from the call to Westview High School).
Police are investigating the threats and have informed the FBI.
On the Beaverton School District Facebook page, more than 200 parents commented. Many expressed frustrations with the lack of information.
One mom wrote, “Is the ‘veiled’ threat by said attacker or by someone who suspects another of a potential attack/violence? This is important info and without it you expect parents to decide on its credibility? This is just so frustrating.”
A lot of the parents mentioned the recent threat of violence at Stoller Middle School, when police went classroom to classroom clearing the school.
Police did not make any arrests in that case.
Classes will go on as normal Wednesday in Beaverton School District, but there will be extra Washington County Sheriff's Office deputies assisting school resource officers.
Police ask parents to remind their children that if they see something suspicious, to say something about it.
Students can use Safe Oregon to report a possible security issue at any school across the state. Be it a phone call or text message, students can report a threat, bullying or suicidal behavior and get help.