The claim that two runaway Lander teens are out to shoot up a preschool in Texas is “a very intriguing story line” social media users have woven together without a credible source, a Texas police agency announced Monday.
Quintin Wyrick and Otis Edlund, both 16, ran away from Lander, Wyoming, on Wednesday, reportedly in a stolen 1969 Chevelle — white with a black top — and some guns. They may have been headed toward Texas, according to the initial call placed to the Lander Police Department.
Texas police agencies went on high alert because of a social media comment one or both boys made about six months ago concerning school shootings, Chief Cliff Woitena of the League City Police Department in Texas announced in a Monday post to his agency’s official Facebook page.
The text of the comment was believed to contain wording about “shooting up a preschool,” media outlet BNO News reported.
Woitena said the comment was made about six months ago, but had nothing to do with his town or community.
“Too many people are taking small parts of this story and building a very intriguing story line, but the tale has no credible source,” says Woitena’s statement.
He said his agency has been guarded with its information because of a lack of credible intelligence, and a desire to prevent the “current state of panic.” But other entities and social media sources “have released versions of this investigation that are not supported or, in some cases, even rooted in fact.”
There’s no documented threat against the schools of League City by the runaways, the statement says.
The League City Police are still investigating and working with other agencies, says the statement.
A Bunch Of Calming Statements
Also in Texas, the Amarillo Police Department dispatched a similar statement last week, saying it was aware of the threat, was monitoring the situation and taking precautions, but that there was at that time no threat in the city.
The Lander school district, Fremont County School District No. 1, likewise sent a calming statement to parents Friday, saying the boys didn’t pose a threat to Lander schools.
The Galveston County Precinct 4 Constable re-posted the League City Police Department’s statement, with the added assurance that authorities increased law enforcement presence at daycare centers and schools in the area.
Woitena did not immediately respond to a Cowboy State Daily voicemail requesting more comment.
Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation Director Ronnie Jones referred Cowboy State Daily to the Lander Police Department, which has been unreachable over the course of multiple voicemails Friday and Monday.