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Eight Manassas area schools threatened via Instagram post, police report; more security ordered

Threat to Schools – The Prince William County Police Department, in conjunction with Manassas City Police and additional law enforcement resources, are actively investigating an anonymous threat that was posted on Instagram and brought to the attention of police on the evening of February 8, according to Sgt. Jonathaan Perok, police department spokesman.

The Instagram account appeared to have been created shortly before the threat was posted and was shut down as part of the police investigation, Perok said.

The threat identified six schools in the Manassas area of Prince William County, which included West Gate Elementary, Stonewall Middle, Sudley Elementary, Ellis Elementary, Loch Lomond Elementary, Sinclair Elementary, and two additional schools in the City of Manassas.

Although believed to be unsubstantiated at this time, the investigation into the threat continues. Perok stated that the Prince William County Police Department takes all threats seriously and will aggressively seek to hold the individual who posted the threat and those involved accountable for their actions, including criminal prosecution, regardless of the intent of the post. The Police Department and Prince William County Public Schools are committed to the safety and security of all students, faculty, and staff.

While no specific date was identified in the threat, additional precautionary security measures will be in place at those Prince William County schools identified in the post in the upcoming days while detectives with both agencies continue their investigation.

The Police Department continues to urge parents to take an active role in monitoring what their children are doing online, including the use of smart phone devices and social media.

Anyone with information on the individual who posted the threat is asked to contact Prince William County Police at 703-792-6500 or Manassas City Police at 703-257-8000.

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