Frontier Regional Alerts sent out automated messages and phone calls on Monday at 11:39 a.m., alerting families of a suspicious email in Arlington. The email prompted school administrators to evacuate the school.
Kids in Arlington were waiting at the Methodist Church for parents to pick them up.
Minutes later, the Condon School District was evacuated after another suspicious email was sent. Students in Condon were moved to an off-site location.
Basketball games that were scheduled for Monday in Condon have been cancelled.
In recent months, dozens of bomb threats have been made to schools across the country. A bomb threat in Madras resulted in an evacuation on November 30, 2023. Another threat was made on November 2 at Clackamas High School.
The trend of calling in bogus bomb threats and evoking a large response from law enforcement has been on the rise in recent years.
FBI spokesperson Joy Lambert said that the agency has seen a significant spike in these swatting cases of bomb threats.
“We’ve seen an increase in these swatting calls and we’re aware of the situation there in Gilliam County,” said FBI spokesperson Joy Lambert out of the Portland office.
Known as “swatting” – these fake calls prompt emergency responders to answer the call and respond to the scene.