Bangor Area Schools Locked Down After ‘Social Media Threat’ [UPDATE]
Police have arrested a 13-year-old Bangor student in connection with the alleged social media threat that prompted the lockdown of two Bangor schools Wednesday morning.
Shortly after 8 a.m., Bangor School Department Superintendent Betsy Webb called parents to let them know the city's schools were on lockdown following an "alleged social media threat" involving Bangor High School and the James F. Doughty School on the city's west side. In addition, a message was placed on Twitter, informing parents that police are on scene at all Bangor-area schools this morning.
The student charged in the matter faces a Class C felony charge of Terrorizing. The case will be presented to the Penobscot County District Attorney’s Office.
Police say the threats originated from a fictitious social media account. Numerous interviews were conducted and with the assistance of Internet Service Providers, a suspect was quickly identified, police said.
Just before 10 a.m., Webb said school officials have lifted the lockdown.
"The Bangor Police Department and school officials have determined that the anonymous threat is no longer active," she said in a recorded message. "There is no ongoing threat."
"Safety is a top priority of all," she continued, "and individuals responsible will be held accountable."
Bangor Police Sgt. Wade Betters issued a statement just before 10 a.m. Wednesday saying police "have no reason to believe there is an ongoing or imminent threat to our schools."
"As always, we will continue to monitor our schools, and address any potential threats that may arise," Betters continued. "We’d like to thank the school department staff who worked with us this morning and the Hampden Police Department, Penobscot Sheriff’s Office and the Maine State Police for assisting us."
The sight of police cruisers around schools in several communities this morning caused alarm in those communities. Several concerned parents gathered outside Bangor High School Wednesday morning waiting for updates.
Schools in several communities, including Orono and Old Town, also went on lockdown Wednesday morning after a report of an active shooter. The report turned out to be a misunderstanding, according to Orono police. Brewer's superintendent sent a notice to parents, letting them know there was no threat to Brewer schools.
Schools as far away as Hancock County also were put on alert, according to a report from the Bangor Daily News. However, no incidents were reported.
This story will be updated as more details become available.