Police say calls about active shooter a hoax

Officers walk through schools to make sure students remain safe

PORT ANGELES — Active shooter reports at schools in Sequim and Port Angeles were a hoax, police said.

Wednesday morning, Sequim and Port Angeles police departments received pre-recorded calls reporting active shooter incidents at Sequim and Port Angeles high schools. The calls were determined to be false.

According to a post on both Port Angeles High School and Sequim High School websites, the first pre-recorded call claimed an active shooter was at Sequim High School, while the second call claimed to be a teacher at Port Angeles High School reporting a shooting on campus.

The calls came in about 10 minutes apart with the first call coming in at 8:50 a.m. to the Sequim Police Department, and the second around 9 a.m. to Port Angeles police.

Law enforcement notified both school districts of the calls and walked through both schools to determine that there was no threat to students or staff.

They said the calls were part of a “swatting” scam.

Swatting is a criminal act in which emergency services are called to a location under false pretenses of an extreme emergency and is a felony in Washington state.

Neither school activated its active shooter protocols.

“We had already received the same information from Sequim High School, so I contacted PAHS right away and officers were on the scene very shortly after, but we did not initiate a lockdown at that time,” said Jackson Vandusen, Port Angeles’ school resource officer.

An investigation was continuing on Wednesday into where the calls came from and who perpetrated them.

“We have not learned at this time who it was,” Vandusen said Wednesday afternoon.

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Reporter Ken Park can be reached at kpark@peninsuladailynews.com.

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