By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Multiple school districts across Wyoming have put extra security measures in place for Friday in response to a threat of violence that has been circulating nationally on the popular social media app TikTok.
A message spread across TikTok throughout the week claiming numerous school shootings will occur on Friday, prompting school officials across the state to take extra precautions.
At least four school districts in Wyoming — Laramie County School District No. 1 in Cheyenne, Natrona County School District No. 1 in Casper, Uinta County School District No. 4 in Mountain View and Park County School District No. 1 in Powell — have responded to the threat while telling parents and community members that no school officials have received reports of any credible threats.
“This situation serves as a good example of why it is important to avoid sharing posts online that refer to school safety threats,” PCSD1 officials said Thursday. “Even if they are not credible threats, they can cause a great deal of stress and anxiety for our students, families, and staff. We ask our families to monitor their children’s social media activity and speak with them about proper behavior online.”
Officials in the other districts shared similar messages with constituents, letting parents know an increased police presence will be seen in schools on Friday.
Casper Police School Resource Sgt. Scott Jones made it clear that anyone taking part in making threats toward a school could face criminal charges.
“We would like to remind all individuals, regardless of age, that a violent threat toward a school is illegal,” said Casper Police Department School Resource Sergeant Scott Jones. “The Casper Police Department will vigorously investigate any claim of violence and hold the person responsible for the threat accountable. In Wyoming, that means a felony arrest for making a terroristic threat. We find this and similar trends highly disturbing and encourage all parents and guardians to have a conversation with their children about the real life consequences as result of these trends.”
Wyoming’s schools were not the only ones planning for extra precautions on Friday, as schools districts across the nation are taking the potential threat of violence seriously and addressing parents’ concerns, according to other news reports.