RIO RANCHO, N.M. (KRQE) – Rio Rancho Police are investigating a possible threat targeting Rio Rancho High School.
On Tuesday, a social media post went out saying, “I am going to shoot up Rio Rancho High School tomorrow.” It goes on to say the shooter will target the humanities and fine arts buildings.
Police say they were first made aware of the threat just before 8 p.m.
Rio Rancho Police are actively investigating and are coordinating with Rio Rancho Public Schools to provide an extra police presence.
The district says police are taking all threats seriously and can press charges even if the threats are intended to be a prank.
They’re also asking parents to talk with their children, saying threats to school safety will not be tolerated and that there will be consequences.
District officials also said additional precautions will be taken Wednesday, beyond the extra security, but did not say what exactly they’ll be doing.
They are asking anyone with information about the origin of the social media post to contact Rio Rancho Police immediately.
Tuesday night, Rio Rancho Schools Superintendent V. Sue Cleveland issued the following statement:
We are continuing to work with Rio Rancho Police Department to investigate the threat and all leads that we receive. We continue to have security and law enforcement personnel on site at our high schools and Rio Rancho Public Schools Safety and Security is monitoring all other schools. The Rio Rancho Police Department will also be monitoring all schools throughout the day.
The continued threats and rumors of threats against our schools has heightened everyone’s anxiety. These threats and the ongoing tragedies across the nation weigh heavy on all of us. We are experiencing trying times and I cannot begin to communicate the anger and concern that I feel towards the individuals who would threaten our children and schools. We understand that many schools across the state and nation are receiving similar threats and in some cases the same screenshot referencing another school.
I recognize that many of our parents had a difficult decision last night when they received our message regarding the threat at RRHS. As a mother of two, I understand the conflict in deciding whether to keep children home or send them to school. We are seeing low attendance numbers at our high schools today. We have received many questions in relation to whether absences will be excused. We are working on determining if that is something we can allow. We will follow up with parents as soon as we have an answer.
Please know that every employee in Rio Rancho Public Schools is dedicated to doing everything he or she can do ensure the safety of all children. Even when there is a threat, we show up ready to teach our students.
Rio Rancho is a strong community and we must continue to be strong for our children. We are so proud of our students, parents, staff and community members. Last night, within 10 minutes of the social media post being shared, we had numerous reports from many individuals across the community. This is a great example of the continued action and support we need. We need to remain vigilant and aware. We need to continue to report concerns immediately.
We are very appreciative of our law enforcement and our security personnel. As always they are dedicated to our students and families and are committed to doing everything they can to provide a safe learning environment for our students. We cannot allow individuals who have no regard for human life or those irresponsible individuals who enjoy inciting fear to run our lives. If they do, they win.
We have scheduled a panel discussion on school safety for parents and community members next Thursday, March 1 at 6:30 p.m. in the Rio Rancho Public Schools Board Room. We will have participants from RRPS, RRPD, Juvenile Probation, Cuddy and McCarthy and the 13th Judicial District Court.
We look forward to seeing our students at school tomorrow.