CALGARY – Officers are investigating an emailed threat made against 20 Calgary high schools last Thursday, in which someone wrote they wanted 200 bitcoins–a type of digital currency– sent to them, or they would put explosive devices in the schools.
Although officials say there is nothing to indicate the threats are legitimate, investigators are now working with other law enforcement agencies across North America to track down an IP address or source of the email. Parents, teachers and other related stakeholders at each of the schools involved are being notified.
The Calgary Board of Education (CBE) said it is working with the Calgary Police Service (CPS) and the Calgary Catholic School District (CCSD) on a “coordinated response” to the situation in a statement on its website.
“Our schools have instituted appropriate security and safety precautions in consultation with CPS and appreciate the co-operation of students and parents,” said the statement.
Centennial High School and Bishop Carroll High School were two of the schools who received threats. In a letter sent home to Bishop Carroll parents, Principal Neil O’Flaherty said “the potential threat was not immediate” and that police presence will be increased “around and throughout the school.”
Police are asking anyone with information about the origin of the threat to call police or Crime Stoppers, but haven’t released a full list of the schools affected. Global News has confirmed public, private and catholic schools are among them.
Making threats, whether in person or by email, is a criminal offence – and police say suspicious activities should always be reported to school administration or police.
Read the letter sent to Bishop Carroll High School parents below, followed by the Calgary Police Service statement:
With files from Tracy Nagai