On November 27, 2018, the Cherry Creek School District sent the following message to all CCSD middle and high school families:
Hello. This is Cherry Creek School District calling with important information for middle and high school families. Yesterday, we were made aware of a social media threat tied to Cherokee Trail High School. Today, that message is circulating on social media and is being shared among other middle and high schools in the district. The Aurora Police Department now believes that the threatening social media post originated outside of the United States and is not a credible threat. We take all questions of safety seriously and will work with police as they continue to investigate this matter. We also ask that you talk with your children about responsible social media use. Spreading rumors and reposting threatening messages on social media can exasperate an already tense situation and create panic in the community. We want to thank Aurora police for sending additional officers to our schools today and for swiftly investigating this matter. To read their full statement on this situation, visit the district website or Facebook page. As always, if you see or hear potentially dangerous behavior or anything that could put students at risk, please report it through our anonymous reporting tool, Safe2Tell at 1-877-542-7233 or by visiting www.safe2tell.org.
Aurora Police Department Message:
ATTENTION STUDENTS AND PARENTS: PLEASE READ THE BELOW MESSAGE ABOUT A RECENT SCHOOL THREAT #SaferAurora
Last evening, the Aurora Police Department was made aware of a threat that was directed towards students at Cherokee Trail High School. This threat was reported to the Aurora Police Department and we immediately began investigating the threat. From the time that the threat was received, we have also worked closely with the @Cherry Creek School to notify parents of the threats. Today at the start of school, we had numerous additional police resources in area high schools and at Cherokee Trail High School.
The purpose of this post is to now provide additional information about the findings of our criminal investigation into this matter. Please note that the investigation remains active and information is subject to change as detectives learn more information about the case.
Here’s what we know:
Last evening a student was contacted by someone on Snapchat who made specific threats of violence. After reporting this incident to police, screenshots of the original threat spread virally on social media. This original threat was reported to police numerous times from students and parents who attend various other schools. Detectives have been in direct contact with Snapchat and have been able to determine that the original threat most likely originated outside of the United States.
Also during the course of the investigation, it was learned that numerous students intentionally interacted with the suspect on social media after the school threat had been made. Without a doubt, this made the situation worse. KNOW WHAT YOUR CHILDREN ARE DOING ON SOCIAL MEDIA AND VIDEO GAMING SYSTEMS! Some of the interaction between students and the offender understandably caused much panic in our community.
We want to reiterate that the safety of our students in Aurora is our top priority when investigating incidents like this. We will always take these sorts of threats seriously and we will work diligently to hold people who make such threats accountable. Not only do we want our students to be safe but we want them to FEEL safe.
As always, if you see something say something. When you see something that doesn’t look right or is suspicious, we depend on our community to report to us. You can call our dispatch center at 303.627.3100 if you wish to report suspicious activity.