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Transcript of hoax 911 call about Minnesota high school shooter released

The call claimed six children at a Rochester school had been shot by a man with body armor and an AK-47

"Swatting" incident at Lourdes High School
Law enforcement officers respond to a reported active shooter situation at Lourdes High School on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 2022, in Rochester. The call was determined to be a hoax, according to officials at the scene.
Joe Ahlquist / Post Bulletin
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ROCHESTER — A newly released transcript of the hoax active shooter call detailed a horrific scene for law enforcement to respond to Sept. 21, 2022, at Lourdes High School in Rochester.

According to a transcript of the 911 call to Olmsted County Dispatch obtained through a public records request by the Post Bulletin, a man called around 10:05 a.m. to say there was an active shooter at Lourdes High School.

He went on to say the school was in lockdown after six students were shot by a white man wearing body armor with an AK-47.

According to the transcript, the call started with a male voice relaying a frightening message:

MALE: Yes, yes, (INDISCERNIBLE), there is an active shooter in the high school, Lourdes High School, (INDISCERNIBLE), —

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DISP: What high school?

MALE: — there is an active shooter in the high school, hello.

About 30 students were stuck in an English class, according to the caller, who said the students who had been shot were in a classroom next door. The caller claimed he was there, in the school at the time, in classroom number 201.

The man ended the call around 10:09 a.m. with the dispatcher trying to find out where the shooter was in the school. Law enforcement arrived four minutes after the call was initially made to find that is was, in fact, a hoax.

No students or other Lourdes personnel were hurt, and no shooter had ever been at the school.

At least 15 schools in Minnesota from Rochester to Cloquet were called Sept. 21 with the same type of call, according to Minnesota Department of Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington. Law enforcement says the calls in Minnesota were internet calls made from similar IP addresses.

“Hoax calls can potentially disrupt the response capabilities to real public safety emergencies and illicit panic and fear that can have long-lasting effects on a community, neither of which occurred yesterday due to the rapid response and quick assessment of the situation at hand,” Rochester Police Chief Jim Franklin said during a press conference that day. “Our investigations team actively investigates all hoax calls and collaborates with state and federal investigators as necessary.”

These hoax calls are part of a spat of "swatting" calls across the country in recent weeks hitting schools in Virginia , Colorado , Arkansas, California, Florida, Missouri and Texas causing the Federal Bureau of Investigation to get involved.

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“The FBI takes swatting very seriously because it puts innocent people at risk. While we have no information to indicate a specific and credible threat, we will continue to work with our local, state, and federal law enforcement partners to gather, share, and act upon threat information as it comes to our attention,” Cyndi Barrington, public affairs officer for the Minneapolis division of the FBI wrote in an email to the Post Bulletin.

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension is investigating the hoax calls that occurred in Minnesota while working with local partners across the state.

Mark Wasson has been a public safety reporter with Post Bulletin since May 2022. Previously, he worked as a general assignment reporter in the southwest metro and as a public safety reporter in Willmar, Minn. Readers can reach Mark at mwasson@postbulletin.com.
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