In a twist on the traditional phone call bomb hoax, Lafayette police say a recent threat naming Happy Valley Elementary school as a target and resulting in an area-wide search of local schools appears to have been computer-generated in origin.
Investigators were able to trace the telephone number where the initial threat originated and have determined that the same threat – modified by computer with a different target name and address – has been received by several local police departments, businesses, and schools.
Determining that the “Robo-Call” threat was actually a scripted template tailored by the sender for each use may explain the initial confusion school officials and police had in determining that Happy Valley – identified in the call by address only and not by name – was the actual target location.
The case has been forwarded to a law enforcement intelligence center for further assessment and investigation, according to Lafayette police.
so what schools are being searched?
Good morning. All local schools were searched as a precaution when this incident took place. Here’s our earlier story.
That’s interesting. Is that sort of technology difficult to access??
Probably some kid playing xbox with another kid through a com link. There are nuances surfacing with technology and how it is being used by terrorists and kids (one and the same? No?) and I’m thinking law enforcement is playing catch up a little. As we have seen – the bad guys only have to get lucky once. And they know how to cover their technological tracks. We’ve got some work to do.
Are there any examples of a phoned in bomb threat resulting in actually finding a bomb? I am not aware of any. And if there are no examples, why even respond?
Hey, Nap… we’d let law enforcement handle your question if they wish, though we would imagine they would say “it only takes one.” But we get your point, remembering a stoic and steadfast Alameda County court judge who refused to leave his building during one such threat, presenting a perplexing situation for law enforcement to be sure.
I would think law enforcement has to respond, but I understand his point too. When I was attending grad school, I worked for a company (financial institution) that got “bomb threats” on a regular basis. We got paid to sit out on the law until everything was “clear.” I was working one Saturday, and my boss Stan got so sick of “alleged bomb threats” that he didn’t call the police. It was payday, and he thought it was an employee that wanted his check, and wanted to go home early. Stan wasn’t fired. He’s lucky he didn’t get fired for placing his employees “at risk.” We were a young staff, and this was “life in the big city.”