INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — Independence police are investigating a school shooting threat Tuesday. But the ongoing problem isn’t isolated to just Pioneer Ridge Middle School or even just the Independence School District.
“Absolute fear, just pure terror? You know? Are they safe? Are the other kids safe? Do they have the means to keep them safe?” said April Schuler, whose daughter goes to Pioneer ridge Middle School.
That’s the thought for a parent when the threat of an active shooter at your child’s school arises.
Schuler’s daughter is an eighth grader at Pioneer Middle School, and that scenario became real on Monday night.
“You send your kid to school, you think they’re going to be safe? You get these threats? You know, are they safe? Are they not?” Schuler said.
Police said the threats typically happen more frequently toward the end of the year.
“For whatever reason, the threats seem to increase a little bit. I don’t know if it’s because everyone He wants to get out of school a little earlier” said Officer Jack Taylor with IPD.
Although this latest incident happened at a school in Independence, they’re not alone. More than 16 school districts across the Kansas City area have had threats of school shootings just this school year. In many cases, more than once.
“Talk to their students, talk to their kids about appropriate conversations to have,” Taylor said.
Taylor said talking to your students most times can be the most important step, but that law enforcement all across our area are ready and able.
“I think our reaction to that and to follow up and get on it as fast as we can and determine, whether there’s a potential for that threat to be real, or whether there’s, you know, it was just somebody that was talking,” Taylor said.
But a deterrent, Taylor said, is making sure when these incidents arise there is responsibility for whoever made such threat.
“I think if students know that they make threats, even though they didn’t intend to carry out those threats, even just making the threat, having that deterrent, knowing that there’s going to be consequences on the backside,” he said.
Pioneer Ridge Middle School did have extra security on hand Tuesday, and there were no reports of any incidents.
An Independence School District spokeswoman tells FOX4 the threats Tuesday were not found to be credible.