UPDATE, 4:15 p.m.: Police have swept the entire Showalter building and found no signs of anything suspicious; more importantly, they have identified and apprehended the person behind the threat, who made a confession. They are now confident that there was zero credibility to the threat and that school can operate normally tomorrow.
Here’s the message sent earlier to the Tukwila community.
Dear Tukwila school community,
In our ongoing effort to keep you fully informed about what’s happening in schools, we’d like to let you know about some extra police activity at Showalter Middle School.
Earlier this morning, police received a tip about a bomb threat made against Showalter via an unknown Facebook account. The threat is for tomorrow. Police immediately went into action, and they expect to have the situation resolved by later this evening. Here’s what they are doing: They are bringing in a K-9 unit this afternoon to sweep the entire building and surrounding area for anything suspicious. They will do the same again tomorrow morning. In the meantime, they are very close to tracking down the owner of the Facebook account so they can deal directly with the individual who made the threat. We have no reason to believe that any of our other school campuses are impacted.
You will likely notice additional police presence on campus this afternoon and tomorrow, and that’s a good thing. Although alarming, police have let us know that the follow-through on threats like this is very low; however, we always err on the side of extreme caution.
At this point, we are expecting Showalter to have a regular school day tomorrow. If we receive any updates, we will post them on the district’s homepage throughout the evening and morning. If police have reason to believe there is an elevated safety risk to students and staff tomorrow morning, we will let the Showalter community know via auto-dial if there is a schedule change. We do expect the situation to be resolved by then.
Safety is our number-one priority, and we thank the Tukwila Police Department for such quick and thorough action.