School shootings ‘threat’ puts FBI on alert

US federal police, the FBI, have announced that they are investigating rumors of a threat of school shootings in the United States. The hearsay broadcast on the social network TikTok is so viral that it has led many establishments to alert parents.

Various authorities have downplayed the credibility of videos discussing on TikTok a possible ” school shooting challenge (School shootings contest) and that gun and bomb attacks could occur on Friday in schools across the United States. TikTok, which said it was investigating, said it identified videos that discussed the threat, but did not track down the threat itself.

The rumor emerges two weeks after a deadly real-life shootout at a secondary school in Oxford, Mich., Where a 15-year-old killed four students and injured several others with a semi-automatic pistol donated by his students. parents. “Information is circulating that today is a day of attacks on schools”, warned in an email Friday the officials of a school in the capital, Washington, adding that “the administration and the local police are in the know and follow it closely ”.

The school district of Pennsbury, Pennsylvania, for its part, told parents that there would be a reinforced police presence around its buildings, although it “does not think the threat is credible.”

“Closely watched” situation

Tiktok said on Friday that it “thoroughly researched content promoting violence in schools today, but still found nothing.” “What we find are videos that discuss this rumor and tell other people to be careful,” said the social network. Local authorities, the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security have confirmed that there is no credible threat, so we are working to remove scare messages that violate our rules against disinformation. “

“If we find [des contenus] that promote violence on our platform, we will remove them and notify the police, ”continues TikTok.

The White House said to “monitor closely” the situation and was outraged, through the voice of its spokesperson, Jen Psaki, on Twitter, “the number of children and parents living in fear of shootings or violence in schools. This is unacceptable “.

The organization Everytown For Gun Safety, which campaigns for better regulation of firearms, recorded at least 149 shootings in schools in 2021 in the United States, which left a total of 32 dead and 94 injured.

Earlier on Friday, the FBI said it took “all threats seriously.” TikTok, which is particularly popular with teenagers, had previously been criticized when other challenges were broadcast that push users to do illegal or dangerous acts.

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