Low attendance recorded at Brookwood High day after threat found in bathroom

The threat, written on a bathroom wall, said, ‘Tomorrow during 3rd I will show all my bullies who I am.”
Published: Sep. 20, 2022 at 6:20 PM EDT
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SNELLVILLE, Ga. (CBS46) - Worried parents at Brookwood High School pulled their kids out of class, and even more, students skipped school altogether on Tuesday following a threat that hinted at a possible school shooting.

The parking lots outside the high school in Snellville were noticeably empty Tuesday afternoon. Madison Edwards, a senior, was among the students who chose to attend classes as police continued to investigate a threat found inside a school bathroom on Monday.

“It was bad,” Edwards said. “There was barely anyone here, I guess, out of fear of what would happen. My teacher was even afraid to let kids out of the classroom.”

The threat, written on a bathroom wall, said, ‘Tomorrow during 3rd I will show all my bull[ies] who I am.” Beneath the message was a bullet that stood upright on the toilet.

“It’s not like it was an empty threat because they brought a bullet to school and it didn’t look like a bullet from a handgun or pistol, but heavy artillery,” said Edwards. “That’s scary because if they have easy access to that who knows what they’re capable of doing.”

Brianna Grass Gupta has a son who’s a senior at the school. Her family chose to keep him home.

“I was afraid because there was an actual bullet,” Gupta said. “It’s very disturbing. I believe they should have gone digital for the week.”

The principal at Brookwood High sent the following message to families on Monday:

Tomorrow we will have additional support from GCPS school resource officers along with presence from the Gwinnett County Police Department. We will continue to pursue every lead that we have and will maintain administrative visibility. I understand the fear and frustration that many of you feel and have heard from a number of you this evening. Please know that my number one goal is for your child to be safe while at Brookwood. Our team will continue to draw on every resource at our disposal to ensure safety. I will continue to work with our law enforcement community to gather support and work with our teachers to ensure that any assignments missed tomorrow will be able to be made up.

On Tuesday, Bernard Watson, a spokesperson with Gwinnett County Public Schools, said school resource officers are working around the clock to find the person responsible. While investigators believe it was not a credible threat, the district wants to assure parents that it takes these matters seriously and examines each as if they are real.

A 2019 survey conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention showed almost nine percent of students had not gone to school at least one day in the prior month because they felt they were unsafe.

Watson said additional officers will be at Brookwood High for the foreseeable future.

Brookwood High’s principal sent the following message to parents on Tuesday:

I am writing to update you on the threat toward our school that I shared with you last night. Since learning of this threat, we have been working diligently with our administrators and school resource officers (SRO) to identify the person responsible.

Although I cannot share many details about our ongoing investigation, what I can share is police have found no evidence that the threat was credible. I can also share that we are looking into the leads that have been presented to us, including those circulating on social media. We have used tips and information from parents, students, and teachers to help us gather this information. As of now, we have not found any evidence directly linking the threat to an individual.

I know these types of threats are very unsettling, but I want you to know that we are taking this situation seriously and we are committed to finding the person responsible. The safety of our students and staff is a top priority and in an abundance of caution, we will continue to have additional SROs on campus for the remainder of this week and longer, if needed. Our staff will continue to follow safety protocols throughout the school days. We are also asking students, parents, and staff to continue to let us know if they see or hear something that poses a danger to our school community.

It is unfortunate and disappointing that someone would make a threat that sparked fear in all of us and disrupted the school day. I understand why many of you decided to keep your student at home today and respect your decision. Our ultimate goal is student safety as we continue to focus on teaching and learning.

As always, I thank you for your continued support.