Reported student threats discussed in a private group chat among Bridgeport Elementary School students Tuesday night have been determined not credible, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department officials.
Colleen Hawkins, Saugus Union School District superintendent, said at least one parent had contacted school officials through the school’s parent communication portal about the alleged threats students were talking about in the chat. School officials, she added, contacted the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, which investigated the matter Wednesday morning, and investigators found no threats.
“It’s an elementary-school-age group of students,” Hawkins told The Signal in a phone call Wednesday morning. “One student said something that they think they heard. We’ve investigated it fully, and it’s nothing.”
Deputy Natalie Arriaga, spokeswoman for the SCV Sheriff’s Station, confirmed that investigators found no evidence of a credible threat.
Hawkins said parents who got wind of the initial rumors from the student chat group notified the school Tuesday night through the “See Something, Say Something” program, which goes through the ParentSquare parent portal.
“The school was notified about it late in the evening, we reported it to law enforcement and investigated as is our protocol,” she said. “There’s nothing there.”
Hawkins sent a statement to parents Wednesday explaining the matter and assuring them that the threats discussed were no more than rumors.
“We thank the Bridgeport family for contacting Principal [Kimberly] Humphries in the early morning hours about this alleged threat,” read a statement from the district. “Their reported followed SUSD’s See Something/Say Something protocol and allowed school staff to appropriately engage law enforcement in an investigation of the allegations.”
“While the alleged threat was found to be an unsubstantiated rumor, SUSD takes all reports seriously and investigates in a timely manner,” the statement continued.
According to district officials, families of all sixth-grade students were notified at 12:31 a.m. Wednesday. The original parent contacted Humphries Tuesday at approximately 11:45 p.m. with a report of an alleged threat, but it was not substantiated by the person reporting it.
At approximately 7:05 a.m., the entire school community was sent another message as another “piece of transparency and communication,” to calm any Bridgeport families that may have heard or seen further rumors via social media in the early-morning hours.
Humphries sent a third message to the community 45 minutes later to reassure community members after families grew concerned seeing several helicopters in the general area. The helicopters were flying around the area for an unrelated incident that occurred in Northbridge Park.
By 9:24 a.m., families were notified that the unsubstantiated rumor was exactly that — a rumor — and the school was not threatened following an investigation by Bridgeport administration and SCV Sheriff’s Station deputies.
“We encourage parents to engage in the school/district’s Parent Square communications as their source for information for incidents involving the school and/or the school community,” read a statement from the district. “Timely and accurate responses are provided by staff in these situations and we communicate in a manner that respects the privacy of the individual students and their families in all cases.”
“Please remember to speak with a member of the school or district leadership through Parent Square if you have a concern to report,” the statement added.
Additional reporting by Signal Staff Writer Jose Herrera.