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Police: Bethlehem schools locked out in ‘swatting’ incident

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By Melanie Lekocevic

Capital Region Independent Media

Bethlehem schools were put on lockout Wednesday after a false report of a bomb threat. File photo

BETHLEHEM — All schools in the Bethlehem Central School District were in lockout following a report of a bomb threat Wednesday.

On Oct. 18, at around 9:47 a.m., the Bethlehem Police Department responded to an anonymous report of a bomb threat in the Bethlehem school district.

All seven schools in the district were in lockout as police investigated and determined there was no bomb. When a building is in lockout, it is secured and there is limited movement of students and staff inside the school.

The lockout was lifted just before 11:25 a.m. Wednesday.

“The investigation into this incident is ongoing and appears to be a ‘swatting’ incident,” according to a statement from Bethlehem Police.

“Swatting” is a prank phone call or report to emergency services in an attempt to bring about a large-scale response from law enforcement to a specific address.

There have been a rising number of swatting incidents at schools across the state.

“It appears that other school districts within New York state also received the same threat,” Bethlehem Police said.

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