Maine State Police: Active Shooting Reports Across Maine Are Fake
Maine State Police say reports of active shooters at high schools across Maine, including Sanford and Portland, are not true.
"The Department of Public Safety is aware of multiple active shooter threats that have been made at schools throughout the state. Maine State Police have been assisting local law enforcement agencies with these initial investigations," spokeswoman Shannon Moss said in a statement. "At this time these reports are believed to be a hoax. The Maine Information Analysis Center (MIAC) is heavily involved in coordinating these investigations."
Portland Police said over 20 officers responded after a call came in on Portland High School's main line at 8:31 a.m., but were told by staff there was nothing going on. The school was placed on a lockdown and the building cleared as a precaution.
A staging area was set up on Cumberland Ave and Chestnut Street for parents to pick up their children.
Reports of an active shooter also came in from Sanford and Gardner.
The York County Emergency Management Agency confirmed that there is no active shooter at Sanford High School.
In a statement, the City of Sanford said a call to the Sanford Regional Communications Center from an untraceable VOIP phone number described an active shooter in a black coat and black pants with a long rifle on the first floor of Sanford High School.
No calls were received from inside the building reporting a shooting, according to the city.
The building was cleared and students were bussed to the memorial gym on Main Street
The FBI's Boston office said it was aware of the threats and is working with local, state, and federal law enforcement to gather and share information.
"We urge the public to remain vigilant and report any and all suspicious activity and/or individuals to law enforcement immediately," the FBI said in a statement.
In October, ten law enforcement agencies in New Jersey were notified about active shootings at schools around the state. All turned out to be false reports.
The FBI’s investigation into threats made against 250 colleges, 100 high schools, and two junior high schools around the country since June may have come from overseas, according to the agency.
This is a breaking story. Check back for additional details.
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNH