CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Three teens were charged Tuesday after a social media threat prompted a lockdown at Olympic High School, leading to early dismissal for some. Polices say students who remained were safe and had limited movement in the school throughout the day.
Police say they were called to Olympic High School on Sandy Porter Road around 8 a.m. to investigate the social media threat, which depicted several people and a gun in a neighborhood near the school. No weapons were located near the school.
Victor Manuel Campos Romero, 16, and the two 15-year-olds were charged with possession of a handgun by minor in the case. One of the 15-year-olds was additionally charged with possession of a handgun on educational property. Parents didn't know all the details but saw the threat on social media, the texts from their kids and panicked.
"There's a shooter at the school," Olympic High School Parent Cara Williams said. "He planned on pulling the fire alarm and when everybody was outside he was going to shoot kids and that's when I said I am on my way."
Williams says her daughter text her and said she was a little nervous. The mother replied telling her daughter how to act if trouble came.
"I never thought in my life I would text my daughter at 9 o'clock in the morning," Williams said. "And say if something happens - play dead and hide."
The lockdown went into place around 9 a.m. as officers investigated. By 10 a.m., parents were being notified via phone that they could pick their students up. By 11 a.m., the school was on a modified lockdown. By that time students were scared not knowing what was going to happen.
"I am getting all these notifications and text from my friends asking are you ok?," Olympic High School Student Jadeson Williams said. "Did you hear about what's going on - yeah - they got one of the shooters. I was like - Lord have mercy, everybody please be safe."
No injuries just shattered nerves. Police say they arrested the first suspect off campus and no word if the other two were ever on campus when this happened. Concerned parents lined up outside the school to pick up their children. "Students and staff are safe," CMS said in an update, also mentioning that counseling support is available for students who want to talk.
"CMS will announce additional measures to help keep guns out of schools and campuses safe very soon," the district said.
Police are working to determine if the threat that sparked the lockdown was credible. "Thankfully students took the responsibility to notify school officials immediately," officials said.
Parents now say they will have a talk with their children to see what is on their minds. They hope the talk will decrease threats to schools and threats posted on social media.
"As parents we are just going to have to do a better job also communicating with our kids everyday," Olympic High School Parent Marquis Davis said. "And making sure that they have a voice to us - so it doesn't get to the point that they feel like they need to bring a gun to the school - are they being bullied? Are they being picked on? Do they feel safe and secure."
CMS used this situation to improve its communication with parents. The school district sent our several updates telling parents what was going on, when they could pick up their kids, and to separate fact from fiction.
"I think this time we made sure that we communicated with our families." CMS Police Chief Lisa Mangum said. "And with our community."
During the Butler High School shooting CMS admitted there was a breakdown in communication. Olympic High School parents say the school district got it right this time.
"I think they did a good job," Davis said. "And first and foremost making sure our kids are safe - that's their first priority, not to send a phone call to us."
Police say there will be extra security at Olympic High School Wednesday.
Officials advised parents to talk to their children and to report a threat on social media but not to repost it. “Educate your kids,” officials said.