NEW LONDON – North Stanly High School is operating under heightened security measures after a threat was called into to the school. According to school sources, the threat included mention of gun violence.
The Stanly County Sheriff’s office is investigating. North Stanly High School has been in the national spotlight after its cheerleading squad was put on probation for holding up a Donald Trump campaign sign at a football game.
Stanly County Sheriff Jeff Crisco told SCJ they took the measure, “as a general precaution,” and it is “a low lockdown, not a true, high-level lockdown.”
What this means for students at North Stanly is that, “Everybody just stays inside the school and there’s not as much freedom of movement.”
Much of the tension revolves around the controversy over a Trump flag displayed by school cheerleaders at football game. There will be a potentially-large protest across the street from the game and Crisco says, “We’re putting the appropriate security measures in place,” in case there are any issues.
“I can tell you this, we’re going to treat anything and everything that is brought to our attention accordingly. We’re going to put all the safety measure in place to ensure that this ball game is as safe as any other ballgame in this county.”
Stanly Schools Superintendent Dr. Jeff James told SCJ, “We call it a low-level; it’s heightened security right now because they have four or five officers on campus because of tonight.”
James also said there are rumors of a future school shooting being passed around on social media, so they are trying to track down where that information began.
“We don’t have a specific person saying they’re going to shoot the school up, but the sheriff has already been out to multiple houses. So the sheriff has been tracing it down from kids’ phones, but we have had some parents come pick up kids. They’re trying to follow up on leads and see if they can trace it back to a credible source.
James said the safest place to be right now is probably North Stanly High School because there are four to five officers on campus and they’ll remain there. He also said the game tonight will be the safest place to be because of all the extra police presence that will be there just as an extra precaution. Rowan, Salisbury and Cabarrus county law enforcement will all be providing “mutual aid” to Stanly County, which was requested by the local officials. Extra school administrators will also be on site to monitor for unusual activity.
He wanted to assure parents that were coming to see their children participate, that they “shouldn’t be scared at all.”