Local Schools, Law Enforcement Address Rumored School Shootings In Arkansas

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark.  (KFSM) — Several posts are being shared on Facebook concerning a threat of school shootings to occur in Arkansas this week.

The posts have been shared hundreds of times on social media platforms alluding to possible school shootings to occur in Arkansas and in Kentucky on Thursday (Aug. 29).

None of these posts point to any specific school. The lack of details has caused massive confusion as to where the original information came from.

The Little Rock Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation released the following statement.

On August 6, 2019, a Field Office of the FBI in another state became aware of an unspecified, non- credible, threat that was made against Arkansas schools. As with all such threats, the FBI took the information seriously and immediately began investigating the threat. Additionally, when the information was provided to the Little Rock Field Office of the FBI, the Little Rock Field Office immediately pushed out the information to our local and state law enforcement partners and began coordinating with them. The information was passed to our law enforcement partners so they could take what actions they deemed necessary to protect our schools and the public. We are grateful for our local law enforcement partners who have been coordinating with local schools regarding this information. As always if you see something concerning in person or on line, contact your local law enforcement department. To provide information related to this release, please contact the Little Rock Field Office of the FBI at (501)–221–9100.

Parents in the River Valley and Northwest Arkansas have been asking about the credibility behind the post. 5NEWS is looking into what local school officials and law enforcement are saying about the rumors.

Aric Mitchell with the Fort Smith Police Department released a statement saying in part that they are aware of the threats and "are working with the Fort Smith School District and their police force out of an abundance of caution to ensure the safety of your children and the men and women who give selflessly to educate them."

If you are aware of any specific or credible information regarding the threat, you're asked to call FSPD at 479-709-5100.

The Alma Police Department said, "As always we will continue to work closely with the Alma School District to provide a secure learning environment for our students." Alma Schools posted the following statement:

Parents, The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release Sunday afternoon describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat.Alma School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. As a part of our security procedures, the information we have been given has been processed through research based threat assessment procedures and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible.We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are safe.  We will use heightened security measures due to this threat.  We will continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week, and will send you any additional information that we receive. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come.As always, The administrators of the Alma School District are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please contact any school or the district office. David Woolly, Alma School District Superintendent

Arkansas State Police put the following statement on Facebook:

The Arkansas State Police has been in close contact in recent days with the Federal Bureau of Investigation attemping to identify the source of an alleged threat of gun violence at an undisclosed Arkansas school reportedly planned for later this week. At this time no corroborating evidence or useful details have been uncovered in regard to the information provided to the FBI. In the event more specific or credible information is received; it will be shared with local law enforcement offices, state and local school officials, as well as Arkansas citizens. The Arkansas State Police asks that if anyone has information about a threat of violence whether the site of the threat may be a school or other public place, please contact your nearest Arkansas State Police Office or local law enforcement agency. A complete listing of state police offices can be found at /

Bentonville School District representatives said they are in communication with local law enforcement but did not say if extra security would be added. They released the following statement:

Parents & Guardians, We recently learned the FBI issued a general awareness statement about information they received regarding the possibility of a school shooting somewhere in the state of Arkansas on August 29. Local law enforcement say the threat is unsubstantiated. The safety of your child is our top priority. We are not aware of any threat to Bentonville Schools and will remain in close contact with Bentonville Police and the Benton County Sheriff’s Office. We will communicate further credible information should it become available.

Booneville School District issued the following statement:

The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat. Booneville School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. As a part of our security procedures, the information we have been given has been processed through research based threat assessment procedure and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible. We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected.  We will use heightened security measures due to this threat.  We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, the administrators of Booneville are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please call any building or the district office.#bearcatsalltheway

Clarksville Schools released the following statement:

The Clarksville School District is aware of the FBI bulletin regarding a general threat to unspecified schools in Arkansas and other states. We will be monitoring this situation very closely. Our children’s safety is our top priority!

The Cleburne County Sheriff's Department released a statement to residents and parents saying in part:

"On August 20, the Little Rock FBI office issued a general awareness statement about information they received relating to possible school shootings in Arkansas and Kentucky. Please rest assured that we  are taking this information seriously. We will be working with the schools through this next week and will take all necessary steps to ensure the safety of the students and staff members."

The Elkins Police Department posted a statement on Facebook about the threat:

The Elkins Police Department is aware of the FBI bulletin regarding a general threat to unspecified schools in Arkansas and other states. We have been in constant communication with the Elkins School District and will be monitoring this situation very closely. At this time, the FBI has no new information regarding the threat. Safety plans and preventative measures have been put in place. Our children’s safety is our top priority!

Farmington Public Schools released the following statement:

Farmington School District is aware of the threat made to an unspecified school in Arkansas. Farmington Administration has been in contact with the local law enforcement authorities and is working to gather more information on the threat made to an unspecified Arkansas school. More information will be shared as we receive it.

Zena Featherston with Fort Smith Public Schools said, "The Fort Smith Public School District is aware of the FBI's bulletin. In reaction to that, we will have extra supervision and presence at the high schools. We are waiting for more guidance from the FBI." The following statement was also released on the Fort Smith Public Schools' Facebook page:

Last week, the Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a "general awareness statement" about information they received about possible school shootings in Kentucky on August 28 and in Arkansas on August 29. The FBI could not confirm the source of the reporting party. Fort Smith Public Schools has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected. As a part of our security protocols, the information we have been given has been reviewed through a research-based threat assessment and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible. We will use heightened security measures throughout the district due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, campus and district leaders are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please contact us with any questions or concerns.

The Greenwood Police Department posted the following statement to Facebook:

Public Safety Awareness Release Chief Will Dawson SUNDAY, AUGUST 25, 2019 The Greenwood Police Department would like to inform our community about information that was presented to us by the Little Rock FBI Office. We have received numerous inquiries today about information shared in relation to this release. The Little Rock FBI office issued a general awareness statement regarding a report they received that a school shooting would occur in Arkansas. The information was specific enough to state a shooting would occur in Kentucky on the 28th and in Arkansas on the 29th. However, the reporting party lives in another country, and his/her identity could not be confirmed. The reporting party allegedly received the information while playing an online video game. This was a general threat and not specific to any school in Arkansas. We at the Greenwood Police Department take all such shared information serious and will always be vigilant in regard to the safety of our community. Specifically in this particular alert, our students and staff. We ask everyone to do their part when keeping the community safe. Remember the See Something, Say Something campaign through the Department of Homeland Security. If you see signs of suspicious activity please contact local law enforcement.

Lavaca High School released the following statement on their Facebook page:

The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday, August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat. Lavaca School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. As a part of our security procedures, the information we have been given has been processed through research-based threat assessment procedure and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible. We will continue to practice sound security procedures daily to make sure our students and staff are protected. We will use heightened security measures due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child's safety is of the utmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, the administrators of the Lavaca School District are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please call any building or the district office.

The Mansfield School District posted the following statement:

Parents and Staff, The Mansfield School District and Mansfield Police Department as well as the Sheriffs Departments work closely together on a daily basis to keep our students and staff safe. The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat. Mansfield School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. As a part of our security procedures, the information we have been given has been processed through research based threat assessment procedure and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible. We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected. We will use heightened security measures due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, The administrators of Mansfield are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please call any building or the district office. Joe Staton, Superintendent

Mountainburg Public Schools posted the following statement to Facebook:

The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat. Mountainburg School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected. We will use heightened security measures due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, the administrators of Mountainburg School District are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please call any building or the district office.

Ozarks Schools released the following statement on Facebook:

The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat. Ozark School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. As a part of our security procedures, the information we have been given has been processed through research based threat assessment procedure and at this time is classified as the lowest risk possible. We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected. We will use heightened security measures due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week. Your child’s safety is of the upmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, but in the weeks, months, and years to come. As always, the administrators of Ozark School District are available to discuss any school matters with you by email or phone. Please call any building or the district office.

The Pea Ridge Police Department released this statement:

Regarding the Internet posts that are going viral regarding a possible upcoming school shooting in Kentucky and Arkansas. I personally spoke with the Federal Bureau of Investigation today and I was told they do not have any credible information regarding a threat to any Arkansas schools. This does not mean that someone did not make those comments while playing a video game and it does not mean there is no threat, just that there is no evidence of a specific threat. With that said, we take the safety of our children extremely serious. We will be working with school administration and providing extra security to Pea Ridge Schools to address any possible problems. Anyone seeing anything out of the ordinary or suspicious activity should report that information to the PRPD immediately. We urge parents to monitor their children’s social media accounts. Children should not repost or share rumors of threats, but should contact an adult instead. Any threats found on social media should be reported to police immediately. – Chief Lynn Hahn

Prairie Grove School District releases a statement saying in part:

"The Little Rock FBI office issued a general awareness statement regarding an unsubstantiated rumor. They received a report that a school shooting would occur in Arkansas on (Aug.29). The threat is not specific to any school in Arkansas. Prairie Grove School District will continue to monitor the provided information and work closely with the Prairie Grove Police Department and other law enforcement agencies to take appropriate security measures."

Rick Schaffer with Springdale School District said, " Does not appear credible but local law enforcement has been advised. They will let us know if any action is necessary." The Springdale School District released the following statement on Facebook:

Due to a message received by the FBI concerning a potential threat to a school in Arkansas, the Springdale School District has been in direct communication with Springdale Police Department Leadership. The Springdale Police Department and the district will have increased police presence this week even though the threat is not believed to be credible. Precautions are being taken to address safety concerns. The district wants to assure all parents that the safety of their children is always our number one concern.

The Tontitown Police Department released the following statement:

The FBI recently issued a general awareness statement about information received regarding the possibility of a school shooting somewhere in the State of Arkansas on August 29th, 2019. The threat is unsubstantiated and no credible information has been received. We are not aware of any direct threats to the Ozark Catholic Academy. The Tontitown Police Department will be working closely with school officials to ensure the safety of all students and faculty. As the information received was such a broad statement, law enforcement agencies across Northwest Arkansas, and across the entire state, are aware and taking appropriate measures.

Van Buren Schools sent out this statement:

Dear Parents/Guardians, The Van Buren School District is aware of the FBI bulletin that is circulating on the internet related to potential threats to unspecified schools in Arkansas and Kentucky.  We have been, and will continue to be, in communication with local law enforcement and state officials regarding the threat.  We are not aware of any specific threats made to any schools in the Van Buren School District.  The safety of our students is our number one priority.  We will continue to monitor this issue and provide updates if available.

Huntsville School District Released the following statement:

From the office of the Superintendent:
The Little Rock Office of the FBI issued a release describing a possible threat, generic in nature, to schools in Arkansas for Thursday, August 29, 2019. They have not confirmed the source or verified the threat.The Huntsville School District has not been made aware of any specific threat against our school or community. We will continue to take the necessary steps to insure the safety of our students and staff. I have been in contact with Chief Thomas and Sheriff Evans and they both said they would stay in touch with the FBI and Arkansas State Police and keep the school district apprised of any changes to the situation.We will continue to practice sound security procedures on a daily basis to make sure our students and staff are protected. We will use heightened security measures due to this threat. We will also continue to communicate with local, state, and federal authorities, as needed, during the upcoming week.Your child's safety is of the utmost importance to us. We are committed to providing a safe learning environment for our students and staff, not only this week, bin the weeks, months, and years to come.If you see something, say something!

We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.

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