Students, parents and staff put on high alert following alleged threat at Braden River High School

ABC7 News at 6pm
Published: Dec. 15, 2022 at 6:07 PM EST
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BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - Threats are something the Manatee County School District says they always take very seriously, following a threat at Braden River High School.

An increased presence of law enforcement was seen throughout the day Thursday, in and around the high school. Two calls warning of the threat were reported on Wednesday through Fortify FL.

“Even if they make that in jest, it is subject to legal and school district consequences,” said Michael Barber, spokesperson for the Manatee County School District.

The school district did send out a message to parents and families about the threat. In messages ABC7 came across, it appears the threat involved a shooting that was allegedly going to take place on Thursday. Benjamin Walmsley graduated from Braden River High School two years ago. He still has siblings who attend the school.

“It’s kind of sad that I have to worry about my siblings going to school and having the stress at their school,” said Walmsley.

Walmsley went on to say the school does a lot of drills, and students are prepared for all types of situations.

“I’m glad it was fake, but still this stuff needs to be taken seriously, even if it is a joke,” said Walmsley. “I mean it’s not a joke, people can die in these situations.”

School officials say these types of threats are very common in their school district. They say they average at least one threat a week at any given school.

“We’ve had hundreds of threats over the last couple of years, every single one of them has been investigated, not one of them has turned out to be founded,” said Barber. “We never take a chance that one will.”