‘Active shooter’ report at AHS called a hoax

Photo by Keith R. Cerny Law enforcement converged on Alamosa High School about 3 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, as reports came in of an active shooter on campus.

APD chief called it a case of ‘swatting’

ALAMOSA — Alamosa High School issued an “all clear” message on Facebook about 3:20 p.m. Monday, Sept. 19, after a call came into 911 dispatch that an active shooter was on campus about 20 minutes prior. All schools were immediately placed on lockdown.

Alamosa Police Chief Kenny Anderson and AHS Principal Andy Laviere said virtually every classroom and other rooms including closets were inspected by law enforcement without finding a suspect.

Anderson referred to it as a case of “swatting” with other similar incidents being reported in Montrose and at least one school in Denver.

“Swatting” is defined as the action or practice of making a prank call to emergency services to bring about the dispatch of many armed police officers to a particular address. The term is derived from a form of harassment in which attackers try to trick police forces into sending a heavily armed strike force — often a SWAT team.

Anderson said the APD was on the scene in a matter of minutes and had assistance from law enforcement agencies from as far away as South Fork and Conejos County, as well the Alamosa County Sheriff’s Department and Colorado State Patrol. Alamosa Fire Department personnel were also on scene as well as Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

In a statement from the FBI’s Denver office, KRDO television reported that numerous “swatting” incidents were reported across Colorado on Monday.

School officials reported on Facebook that 911 received a call from an administrative number regarding shots fired at AHS but confirmed that the call did not originate from the district.

Students were released at their normal “bell” Monday, but buses were delayed due to the call.

Hundreds of concerned parents and other citizens huddled around the vicinity of the high school as the incident unfolded.