Recent school threats part of statewide ‘swatting’ trend, police say

Police called the threat part of a statewide trend and not an isolated incident in Willimantic.
Published: Sep. 22, 2022 at 5:34 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 22, 2022 at 8:20 AM EDT
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WILLIMANTIC, CT (WFSB) - A high school in Willimantic will have added security on Thursday morning after a threat Wednesday sent students and staff home early.

Police called the threat part of a statewide trend and not an isolated incident.

Recent threats have been reported at several schools over the last two weeks.

Even though police said the threats were not credible, they were extremely unnerving for parents, students, and staff.

Wednesday, there were incidents at Windham and Manchester high schools.

Officials said someone called police to report an armed intruder inside of Windham High School. The call prompted a lockdown and early dismissal.

Eastern Connecticut State University, which is located right across the street, ordered a shelter in place.

The call followed three more vague threats that happened last week in Southington, Watertown, and Plymouth.

Wednesday, parents could be seen crying outside of Windham High School as they waited for more information and ultimately to see if their children were safe.

Police said the trend of reporting fake threats is known as “swatting.” School communities said they’ve been fed up with it.

“We immediately went into our corner. We were scared because we heard it in her voice how scared she was,” said Nineliez Aguilar, a Windham senior.

“I was very scared and petrified for my son,” said Luz Quinones, whose son is a senior. “You don’t know if there’s going to be an active shooter in the school, so my first reaction was to get up and go.”

Police said there will be an increased police presence at Windham High School on Thursday in an effort to make the community feel safer and discourage any other incidents.

A high school in Willimantic will have added security on Thursday morning after a threat Wednesday sent students and staff home early.