The almost empty student parking lot at Yucaipa High School this morning, Nov. 19, was a sad response to what students deemed a viable shooting threat.
A post on Twitter late Wednesday evening that read, “gonna shoot up yhs tmrow be ready mofos,” created a huge frenzy, as YHS students shared the post and began telling friends about it. Many families decided to keep their children home because of it.
Thursday morning, the San Bernardino Sheriffs Department sent out a press release, which stated, “Yucaipa Police Department is working with the Yucaipa-Calimesa Joint Unified School District to investigate a social media post circulating among Yucaipa High School students threatening violence at the campus.
Initial investigation of the original post has determined no quantifiable nexus to Yucaipa High School.
At this point in the investigation there is no evidence to indicate there is a credible threat.”
Before the start of school today and throughout the day, YHS Principal Shad Kirkland was visible and greeted students along with a couple of deputies from Yucaipa Police Department.
Meanwhile, at 2:20 p.m., YPD released the following statement:
“Yucaipa Police Department was notified of a post on social media that threatened violence on the Yucaipa High School Campus. Investigators working in conjunction with personnel from the Yucaipa-Calimesa Joint Unified School District, worked through the night and were able to identify the person who posted the original threat. The suspect has been identified as a 15-year old Yucaipa High School Student. The student was acting out a prank and at this point, the immediate threat has been unfounded. The completed investigation will be forwarded to the district attorney for review.”
YHS staff is encouraging students to attend school tomorrow as usual.
Principal Kirkland thanked San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department for their assistance in the investigation. “Deputy Eric Lugo worked through the night interviewing students for information regarding the threats on social media,” said Kirkland. “The coordinated efforts between the Sheriff’s Department, YCJUSD personnel, and YHS parent groups led to a quick and safe resolution to this situation.”
Yucaipa Calimesa School District Board of Ed President Jane Smith also thanked YPD for the prompt investigation. “The safety of our students is always a priority for the Board of Ed and YCJUSD. We appreciate our parents support in their reporting to the district and the police department and we are pleased with results of this matter in less than 24 hours.”
Yucaipa Calimesa District superintendent Cali Binks said the investigation revealed the original Twitter post came from a fictitious Twitter account. She also thanked parents and staff for support and suggestions throughout the day.