ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — Police agencies were on the scene at multiple schools in Pennsylvania after getting calls about an active shooter.
Pennsylvania State Police (PSP) have confirmed these to be “swatting” calls — fake calls meant to draw a large police presence — and there’s no known threat to any surrounding schools at this time.
Police had swarmed Altoona, Hollidaysburg, Bishop Carroll, Bellefonte, and other schools across Pennsylvania just after 9 a.m. Wednesday, March 29.
All calls were said to have had similar content and were made to multiple counties around Pennsylvania.
Sgt. Plummer with Altoona Police, and later Pennsylvania State Police, confirmed that the calls were a false alarm. All schools involved have been cleared or are in the process of being cleared by law enforcement, Pennsylvania State Police said.
Many Pennsylvania schools went into lockdown, even if no call was made about them, citing an abundance of caution. University of Pittsburgh also took that precaution after a call was made about a shooter at a nearby school.
Cambria County District Attorney Greg Neugebauer asked all Cambria County schools to lockdown out of an abundance of caution after calls were also made about an active shooter at two schools in the county
Neugebauer said the Cambria County schools lifted their shelter-in-place by 11 a.m. and the DA said the following about the events of Wednesday:
“Today shows that first responders are prepared to respond to these types of situations. We also learned that schools are prepared. Students and staff participate in drills throughout the year in preparation. The schools impacted demonstrated that they are ready to take appropriate action, and they did so today. While this morning was anxiety filled for parents, students and teachers alike, it presents an opportunity for all involved to see what we did well, and to see where we can improve. The safety and security of our children are of utmost importance, and we will continue to prepare to be ready to protect them, and will take all action necessary to ensure their wellbeing.”Cambria County District Attorney Greg Neugebauer
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It was reported by police that the calls came from out of state and the FBI will be getting involved in the investigation.