Threat leads to extra security at Vista High - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Threat leads to extra security at Vista High

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SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8/CNS) - Students and staffers at several San Diego-area intermediary and secondary schools went about their day amid heightened security Thursday due to unsubstantiated threats of campus violence, one of which led to a teenager's arrest.

Education officials in San Diego and Vista said none of the threats are credible but said they were being investigated and that extra security was provided at the campuses "out of an abundance of caution" following last week's deadly shooting in Parkland, Florida, which left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Vista High School Principal Anthony Barela informed families of the threat in a phone message that was also posted online.

"I am calling to let you know that earlier today we were informed of a social media post and speculation of a possible school shooting tomorrow," Barela said in the message that went out Wednesday afternoon. "While there is no credibility to this threat and nothing to substantiate a threat to Vista High School, as a precaution there will be extra law enforcement on site tomorrow. Law enforcement is actively investigating this threat."
 

Barela went on to say that while unsubstantiated, the threat is being taken "very seriously," and school officials have requested extra security on campus to ensure "safety for each and every one of our students."

There are reports that two schools in the San Diego Unified School District sent out similar messages Wednesday concerning unsubstantiated threats Thursday at Madison High School and nearby Innovation Middle School in Clairemont.
 

"In light of the events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last week, I want to communicate that we are actively investigating a potential threat to our campus that was posted on social media," wrote Principal Richard Nash in a message sent to a parent at the school. "San Diego Unified School Police has been investigating this matter and does not feel there is a credible threat to our school."
 

Nash assured parents that school officials take campus safety seriously and wrote that in an abundance of caution, "school police will have additional officers at the school first thing in the morning."

Innovation Middle School Principal Nicola Labas sent out a nearly identical message to families, according to reports.

Early Thursday afternoon, San Diego police detained a Torrey Pines High School freshman at his home to question him about threatening verbal and written statements he allegedly had made, SDPD public-affairs Officer Joshua Hodge said.

After interviewing the 14-year-old about the purported comments, which had led to his suspension from school on Wednesday, juvenile-services officers arrested him on suspicion of issuing criminal threats and took him to juvenile hall for booking.

The suspect's name was withheld because he is a minor, and details on the nature of his alleged threatening statements were not made public.

The unsubstantiated threats are just the latest in a series of such incidents this week. On Monday, officials at San Marcos High School alerted parents to a social media posting that some students perceived as a shooting threat to the school. It ultimately turned out to be a re-posted news story about a South Carolina teen arrested for making a threat at his high school, but San Marcos school officials requested extra campus security on Tuesday as a precaution.

On Tuesday, there was also a heightened police presence at High Tech High Media Arts after a the discovery of a threatening graffiti scrawl at the Point Loma charter school.

According to reports, purported threats to schools have surged following the latest campus killing spree in Florida. While most of the threats have turned out to be unsubstantiated, at least one incident in Los Angeles County's South Whittier led sheriff's deputies last week to a cache of guns at the home of a student who was allegedly overheard saying he was going to shoot up the school within the next three weeks.

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