Published: 1:09 pm, Fri. Nov. 22nd, 2019
A threat directed at Artesia High School placed the school on lockdown for about an hour this morning but was ultimately deemed not credible.
The Artesia Public Schools issued a notification around 9 a.m. today that AHS students were remaining in their first-period classes while an alleged threat was investigated. Around 10:15 a.m., the district reported the school was back on its regular schedule, and all students and staff were safe.
According to Cmdr. Lindell Smith with the Artesia Police Department, School Resources Officers, APD detectives, and APS administrators met with “several persons involved” before determining “there is no credible threat at this time, and it is safe for students to return to their regular schedule.”
Smith said the incident remains under investigation by the APD, however. The original threat was reportedly issued verbally from one student to another before a student proceeded to pass it along to another via text message.
Unfortunately adding to the turmoil was the fact that, just before noon, the gunshot detection system at Roselawn Elementary School was activated. That, however, was determined to be a system malfunction. Smith said there was no evidence of shots fired.
APS Superintendent John Ross Null said the district appreciated the response of the APD and the cooperation of students, staff and parents.
“All threats are taken very seriously and resolved as quickly as possible, with safety being our primary concern,” Null said. “We encourage parents to notify their child’s school if they are not receiving texts regarding these types of situations.”
In addition to the APS’ text alert system, Null says parents are encouraged to follow the district on Twitter at twitter.com/artesiabulldogs, as the schools plan to begin using that platform as an additional communication tool.