Hoax leads to lockdown at Paly, call made on phone that had been lost or stolen

A Palo Alto police officer walks through Town & Country Village Shopping Center just after a lockdown ended at Palo Alto High School across the street. Post photo by Allison Levitsky.
A Palo Alto police officer walks through Town & Country Village Shopping Center just after a lockdown ended at Palo Alto High School across the street. Post photo by Allison Levitsky.

By the Daily Post staff

8:21 p.m. — Police haven’t found the man who called in the Palo Alto High School shooting hoax today, but they say the call was placed using a phone that had either been lost or stolen at the Town & Country Village Shopping Center earlier in the day.

After discovering the phone was missing, the phone’s owner called their cell company to deactivate it.

Police tried to call the person back who made the threat, but because the phone had been deactivated, it would not receive incoming calls, police said. Yet the phone could still be used to place 911 calls.

The caller used the name of a student at Palo Alto High School, but the boy’s cellphone did not match the number of the phone from which the threat was made.

“In order to be thorough, officers conducted a search of that student and his belongings, and did not locate any contraband,” a statement from police tonight said.

Police said they’re still trying to find and arrest the caller.

“We would like to emphasize that hoax threats such as this are not only criminal in nature, but they also create a great deal of stress and anxiety for students, parents, school staff and the community in general,” the statement from police said.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call police at (650) 329-2413.

2:34 p.m — The lockdown has been cancelled. Police believe it was a hoax. School will be dismissed at the usual time.

1:24 p.m. — Palo Alto High School at this hour is on lockdown after the Police Department received a threat of violence against the school.

“Out of an abundance of caution, expect a heavy police presence in the area while we investigate,” police said on Twitter. “The school is on lockdown as a precaution.”

We’ll have updates when additional information is available.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.