(Hermiston, OR) — Scary moments at Hermiston High School Tuesday after a fake call of shots fired on campus. Umatilla County Fire District One says they were called to the scene just before noon for the call that included possible victims. They were joined by Hermiston Police and the Umatilla County Sheriff’s Office and the Oregon State Police and several other agencies. Upon arrival, authorities began to set up the Mass Casualty Incident Protocol and began preparations for patient care. A lifeflight helicopter was called in to standby.
After about 20 minutes, it was clear there was no threat to the campus and the lockdown at Hermiston High was lifted, as was another lockdown at nearby West Park Elementary School. According to Hermiston School District 8R Superintendent Dr. Patricia Mooney, the prank caller specifically named HHS as a target. She says this was a clear instance of so-called “swatting.” That’s where the fraudster attempts to draw law enforcement to a particular location.
There were apparent similar attempts at swatting at schools in LaGrande and Baker City, along with other locations across Oregon. Now authorities are turning their attention to who might have made the call. The investigation into that is underway.
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