UPDATE OCT. 3, 12:30 P.M.: Threats do not appear credible, school to be held Oct. 4
October 3, 2017
The Johnston Police Department (JPD) held a press conference Oct. 3 at 10:30 a.m. with Superintendent Corey Lunn to release the most updated information on the threats.
Police Chief Dennis McDaniel said that the police department has worked throughout the night following numerous accurate leads and misinformation.
“At this time, we cannot substantiate any credible imminent threat to any of our schools, students, parents or staff,” McDaniel said.
JPD is working the investigation in conjunction with the FBI, the Joint Terrorism Task Force, and other state and local law enforcement officials. They have also engaged private security partners “that are cyber security experts,” McDaniel said.
Because of the nature of the threats, JPD is withholding information at this time as to not compromise the investigation and have time to work with the legal system.
“Be patient in this investigation,” McDaniel said. “There is a tremendous amount of information to sort through and it becomes very technical.”
If threats are received, McDaniel recommended not engaging in conversation, but to report them directly to the police department.
“We believe that its very likely these messages will continue,” McDaniel said. “It’s very likely they will come from a new number or a different series of numbers.”
Superintendent Lunn has been given information not yet released to the public about the investigation. “I’m comfortable, knowing what I know now, to have school tomorrow,” Lunn said.
School is currently going to be held tomorrow. If messages continue, the district will collaborate with local police officials to determine the best course of action.
“If the school session does resume tomorrow, we will have an increased law enforcement presence in each of the school buildings,” McDaniel said.
The police department released a statement from their Facebook page Tuesday morning.
“As this case advances, the Johnston Police Department would like to make people aware that information being shared on a variety of social media channels is inaccurate,” they said. “Please continue to monitor our Police social media pages as updates will be shared once we have information.”
JPD plans to release more information near the end of the work day.