Education

‘No reason to be concerned’ about unsubstantiated school violence threat, Caulk says

Fayette County Superintendent presents “State of Schools”

Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Manny Caulk presents the 2019 State of Schools address at the Lexington Convention Center.
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Fayette County Public Schools Superintendent Manny Caulk presents the 2019 State of Schools address at the Lexington Convention Center.

Local and federal law enforcement officials have told Fayette County Schools police that there’s no reason to be concerned about an unsubstantiated threat of violence at schools in Kentucky and Arkansas this week, Fayette Superintendent Manny Caulk told parents in a letter Tuesday.

“Our Fayette County Public Schools Police Department has been in direct contact with the ... FBI branch office and the Lexington Police Department and the agencies agree that there is no reason to be concerned,” he said.

Caulk included information from the Kentucky Office of Homeland Security that said:

“We are aware of a Facebook post circulating about a possible incident at a school being planned for the 28th in Kentucky and the 29th in Arkansas. Initially the threat was reported to FBI Little Rock from an individual outside of the US. The threat was read in a gaming chat room that indicated there is going to be an incident at a Kentucky and Arkansas school on the 28th and 29th of this month. The threat did not name a specific location in either state and was very generalized.”

“ At this time, the complaint is unsubstantiated If anything further develops from this report, the KIFC will push out additional information as it becomes available. The FBI and KIFC, as well as state and local law enforcement, continue to monitor this situation.”

The FBI in Louisville issued a statement Monday saying officials were aware of an unspecified internet threat against schools in Kentucky and Arkansas but had no reason to believe the threat was credible. The statement recommended that people contact the FBI or local law enforcement if they saw something suspicious online or in person. FBI spokesman Timothy Beam told the Herald-Leader he could provide no additional information.

Kentucky Education Commissioner Wayne Lewis told superintendents in Kentucky in a letter on Monday that news media in Arkansas were reporting a possible school shooting threat.

Caulk told parents in his letter on Tuesday that the “FBI has thoroughly investigated the situation, and they assure us that there is no evidence to suggest the threat is credible.”

Caulk said in his letter that each Fayette County public school “has excellent safety and security procedures, that begin with prevention and deterrence and include specific action plans in case of emergency. “

He encouraged parents with questions to speak to their principal or call the Fayette County Public Schools police department, at 381-4200, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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