FBI called to investigate numerous swatting calls to local schools
ROCHESTER, N.Y. – For weeks now our local school districts have been targeted by fake threats called or emailed in. It’s called swatting because it gets SWAT teams to converge on a school. Now, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is calling the FBI to investigate.
Every time a threatening call or email is sent in, it not only ties up resources, but it also leaves both students, and staff fearing for their safety as police sweep the school buildings.
“Students are wondering if they’re ever going to see their parents. Adults are wondering if I’m going to see my family again,” says Brockport Superintendent of Schools, Sean Bruno.
He painted the picture of what it’s like to be in lockdown during a threat against a school. Last week alone 36 schools across the state including Brockport and Brighton Schools were targeted. Tuesday, Spencerport Schools were threatened even though students are on Spring break. Bruno says swatting threats like these are tough on everyone.
“Even in a hoax situation we have to search the school,” says Bruno. “So, think about that. You’re in a classroom, and you’re trying to be calm, but you’re scarred and the next thing you see are officers walking by your classroom searching the building.”
“So these are despicable. This is not just something that happens,” says U.S Senate Majority Leader, Chuck Schumer. “This is something we must do everything we can to prevent because it causes such damage psychologically and otherwise.”
Schumer is now calling on the FBI to get involved. Schumer says he has a three-prong plan to fight these swatting threats. First, he’s calling on the FBI to investigate all future threats. Secondly, he says the Feds need to keep track of these crimes. Lastly, he wants $10 million from the federal government allocated to combat the growing swatting problem.
“They will be able to hire personnel. They will be able to buy machinery. They will be able to use cybersecurity, and they’ll be able to use the social media to find out who did it, and then bring them to justice,” says Schumer.
He also believes the federal government will approve the $10 million request. Last time this request was made it was denied by Congress.