ALBEMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Albemarle County police investigated a social media threat against a local high school on Friday that turned out not to be credible, and is now reminding parents and students alike about the importance of online safety.

On the morning of Friday, Sept. 9, Albemarle County Police Department officers responded to a threat to Western Albemarle High School that was made through social media. After an investigation, officers determined this threat was not credible.

The person responsible for the features, a juvenile, will be charged under section 18.2-60 of the Virginia Code, which includes with “threats of death or bodily injury to persons on school property.”

Albemarle County Police Department stated that it takes all threats on schools seriously and will continue to work with the school system, parents, students, teachers and staff to keep everyone in community schools safe.

Albemarle County Police has also released several online safety tips in light of this incident, and are encouraging parents and guardians to read this list and discuss it with their children:

  • Monitor your child’s phone, computer, and online accounts regularly.
  • Your child should not have a phone, computer, or online account that you do not have access to.
  • Have a conversation with your child about the use of their phone during school.
  • Phones at school should only be used in an emergency and should otherwise remain in a backpack or pocket.
  • In the event that a student sees a threat on social media, through a text or online, they should immediately notify a school administrator and the police. In this case, Albemarle County Police Department will work with the school to develop a plan of action. At no point should anyone share the plan with friends or post it online.
  • Many children and teenagers believe that there is a certain amount of anonymity online. While this is somewhat true, the internet is not completely private.
  • Some may think that school threats are funny, but the community and police do not. Those who make these posts will be held accountable and there will be criminal consequences.

Families are encouraged to reach out to police with any additional questions or concerns.