ECTOR COUNTY, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- On Tuesday morning, Ector County ISD placed all elementary school in “secure” following an investigation into a threatening voicemail.
According to the district, overnight, the Federal Bureau of Investigation received a voicemail from a man in Odessa who threatened to shoot elementary students unless he got help. When notified this morning, local law enforcement agencies began a coordinated effort to locate the man. ECISD placed all elementary schools into Secure, which is a precaution and means all students and faculty members remain inside and visitors are restricted from the building.
The Secure was lifted after an hour, at approximately 10:30 a.m., when the FBI, Department of Public Safety and ECISD officers located a person of interest. After interviewing that person, officers said they do not believe the threat sent to the FBI to be credible. The investigation is ongoing.
District leaders said they were unable to release information behind the secure status because officers did not want it to be widely reported and potentially tip off the suspect.
Here’s a closer look at Ector County ISD Standard Response Protocol, which defines five campus conditions to be used in an emergency situation:
HOLD: This means school leaders will clear the halls and students will remain in their current classrooms to continue learning but will not be allowed to change classrooms until the hold is lifted.
SECURE: This means there is a potential threat OUTSIDE of the building, for example, a police response in a nearby neighborhood. Inside the school, it’s business as usual and exterior school doors are locked.
LOCKDOWN: This means there is a threat, or possible threat INSIDE the school. Students will remain in their classrooms behind locked doors, out of sight from potential indruders, while police enter and secure the building.
EVACUATED: Students are moved from one place to another.
SHELTER: This means there is severe weather outside or other potential hazard, and students are asked to stay in and shelter in place.