Police: Reported threat that locked down Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School ‘unfounded’

BETHESDA, Md. (DC News Now) — The Montgomery County Department of Police (MCPD) placed Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School in lockdown on Thursday after a reported threat.

MCPD said that the initial threat came in as a call shortly after 11:20 a.m. A Community Engagement Officer who responded and talked with the caller determined that there was enough of a threat to call for more units. SWAT and K9 responded to help clear the area.

As of 1:40 p.m., the school was no longer in lockdown. MCPD said that the threat was “determined to be unfounded.”

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MCPD said that other businesses around the country were targeted by similar calls on the same day as well. Officials were investigating a possible connection between these calls.

Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School was the only place in Montgomery County that received one of these calls, police said.

Though the threat was eventually determined to be unfounded, the fear and anxiety among the school community was real.

“We were hanging out outside on the pavilion, then the security guards yelled at us to get inside. It was really scary. I was like, ‘what is going on?,” said one B-CC student.

“I was in the hall eating lunch with friends, then over the announcements an alarm came on and they said to immediately find a teacher and a classroom. It was scary. We didn’t know what was going on,” said another. “They told us to sit down, turn all the lights off, lock the doors.”

School officials said that the rest of the school day had been canceled and that students would stay in their current classrooms for the rest of the school day. Students can go home via their normal methods after the day wraps up at 2:30 p.m. Officials said that they are allowed to walk home as well.

School officials said that if any parents in cars want to pick up their students early, they need to go to the parking structure on Pearl Street with state-issued ID and the student’s first and last name ready. Parents should not drive to the main office.

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