ARLINGTON, Texas — The social media school threats are not only forcing school districts to deal with it, but also officers at law enforcement agencies like the Arlington Police Department.
Arlington police are warning parents, whether threats are real or not, they can lead to an arrest for their children -- especially where school shootings have happened in real life.
After the Timberview High School shooting earlier this year, Arlington police has been on defense. The shooting left one student injured and another facing aggravated assault charges, and sparked a flood of copycat threats, according to police.
"We have seen an increase in threats, especially in the last few weeks related to social media posts," said Officer Jessie Minton.
The Arlington Police Department is not alone in increased threats.
Some threats are reportedly in response to a TikTok challenge, in which students create a 'hoax threat' to say a school shooting will happen on Dec. 17. It has spread not only across Texas, but coast to coast from California to Michigan to New York.
In Texas, you can now add Allen Independent School District to the list. Although proven as "not credible," some local police departments have federal resources to help investigate.
"The FBI has been very clear from the beginning of this that they are there to lend their full support anytime a threat is made to a school," said Officer Minton.
A threat was also made at the middle school in the Lewisville school district, and it left Laura Couture looking for answers.
"You start to question if you want to send your kids to school, or if you want to keep them home from school," said Couture.
Police are urging parents to monitor their kids' cellphones, because they are being used to post or re-post threats that are circulating online.
"I can think of probably five or six in just this semester that we have had to arrest people out of the school, or go to their home and an arrest was made," said Officer Minton.