Parents, guardians react to school threats at Roanoke City Schools

William Fleming and Patrick Henry were both put on lockdown Wednesday for separate incidents

William Fleming High School and Patrick Henry High School went on lockdown Wednesday due to potential threats

ROANOKE, Va. – Two Roanoke high schools were put into lockdown on Wednesday, leaving many parents and guardians in the community concerned.

Roanoke Police said they charged a 14-year-old girl in connection with a threat was made against William Fleming High School, causing the school to go into lockdown.

Police blocked off all entrances at William Fleming High School for hours during the lockdown, not allowing anyone to come onto the campus – including parents.

“That’s dangerous. You keep them in that school, we don’t know. There could be a bomb in the school and it could blow them up, we don’t know,” said Penny Purdue a grandparent of a William Fleming student.

Many parents told 10 News they were texting their kids who said they were locked in classrooms and their bags were being checked.

“I felt like I cannot talk on the phone so I’ve been texting to her but she said they are locked in each room,” said Angel Martinez, whose daughter goes to William Fleming.

At the time, the threat was unclear.

“I don’t know. A gun?” said William Fleming student Jahnee Ambroise when asked what she thought the threat was.

“She says somebody with a gun, that’s all she told me. That’s why I came here right away,” added Martinez.

Roanoke Police said that despite the rumors, there were no weapons found inside the school, and no one was hurt. The school was eventually dismissed early around 12:20 p.m.

About an hour later, Patrick Henry High School was put on lockdown due to a threat in their school.

“I think it’s ridiculous, something needs to be done. Kids need to understand that this is not a joke. This is not something you play with and if they want to put themselves in a position to do this kind of thing then they need to suffer the consequences,” said Latanya Casey whose grandson goes to Patrick Henry.

PH students were dismissed as normal and Roanoke Police said they believed that call was a hoax.

Roanoke PD is also warning students that threats like this have consequences, and encouraging parents to talk about the impact that words can have.

About the Author:

Alyssa Rae grew up in Roanoke and graduated from Virginia Tech. An avid sports fan, she spent her first 8 years in TV as a sports anchor and reporter.