Bodycam shows Akron officers rushing into school during active shooter hoax

Published: Sep. 28, 2022 at 10:35 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

AKRON, Ohio (WOIO) - The Akron Police Department released bodycam footage on Wednesday, showing officers rushing into Garfield Community Learning Center with their guns drawn last Friday, after they received a call reporting an active shooter in the building.

It turned out to be a hoax.

The video shows multiple officers arriving at the high school and sprinting toward the front door.

When they got inside, school staff appeared to be confused.

“We have an active shooter call here,” and officer told an unidentified employee, who was standing beside a Summit County Sheriff’s Deputy, believed to be a school resource officer.

“What? Not that I know of,” the deputy told the officer.

After searching the entire building, officers determined there was no threat.

“I’m just glad the cops came and let them know what’s going on,” said Bernice Murray, whose twins are in ninth grade. “This is really bad on my kids. This is their first time going to high school.”

Akron police said at a little before 11:30 Friday morning they got a call about a man with a gun at Garfield Community Learning Center.

Dozens of officers and paramedics rushed over to the high school only to discover the call was a hoax.

In the phony call, the man implied he is a teacher at the school.

“The suspect’s armed with two AK-47, red shirt, body armor, and blue pants that he was wearing came to our classroom and opened fire on the students,” the caller claimed.

It’s just one of several swatting calls that went out to schools across Ohio on Friday.

In Cleveland, police got a call saying there was an armed suspect outside of St. Ignatius High School.

The FBI says swatting – or making a phony call to emergency services just to waste police resources - has become more common.

The FBI said if you’re caught making a false report like this about a school you could spend up to five years in federal prison.

Akron police said their detectives are working with local and federal agencies to track this caller down.

Authorities don’t know if they were made by the same person or if they are connected.