The bomb threat made against the California school campuses has been investigated and believed to be a hoax.
“We had several law enforcement agencies who invested the credibility of that threat, and they learned that there were multiple threats in another state that were very similar to ours,” Superintendent Dwight Sanders said. “So through that part of their investigation and just assessing our facilities through facility sweeps, sniffing canines and things like that, they felt like the threat wasn’t credible.
“We took the original email that contained the threat it said within the next 48 hours this would be carried out we kept our facilities locked down for that 48 hours and now that that time has come and gone we have reopened our buildings,” he said.
Detectives with the Moniteau County Sheriff’s Office utilized emergency investigative subpoenas to Google and were able to determine the sender of the threat was using a Google email that had been closed for several years. Upon further investigation, they were able to determine the threat was routed through a VPN from another country.
“The email came in at 9:33 Wednesday morning so this morning at 9:33 would have been 48 hours,” Sanders said. “I consulted at that time with our school resource officer, Scott Harkins, to make sure there wasn’t any more information because we had visited yesterday evening, but we didn’t want to put anything out yet because we wanted to wait that 48 hours.
“This morning there was no new information so we felt confident based on similar threats being made elsewhere that it was probably a hoax, and so I communicated out to our staff and to parents that we felt that it was not a credible threat,” he said.
Working with the Missouri Information Analysis Center, investigators discovered similar threats had also been made in the state of Delaware. The Moniteau County Sheriff’s Office then made contact with the Delaware State Police and believe both threats are to be a hoax perpetrated by individuals who have no ties to either location.
“We’ve had our buildings on lock down to the point that we also had shut off our card reader access … we opened that back up today at noon and allowed the teachers to, if they wanted, get back in their rooms and start getting ready for the school year,” Sanders said. “We also had some coaches planning some practices for this afternoon, so we’re kind of back to our full operation. … So we will start in full Monday morning with additional teacher in-service activities along with other staff members.”
The California school campuses want to thank the California City Police Department, Moniteau County Sheriff’s Department, Missouri Highway Patrol and the school resources officers who helped investigate and prove the threat to be a hoax.