DPS, police boost school security after faxed threat

Mark Hicks
The Detroit News

A threat has sparked a probe and heightened security at the Detroit Public Schools Community District, officials said Tuesday.

Stacey Brackens, chief of the district’s police department, did not detail the threat in a statement released Tuesday. It said it was “from an unidentified source.”

On Wednesday, district spokeswoman Chrystal Wilson said there were no updates. Authorities have encouraged the district to keep class in session as they continued their investigation, Wilson said.

District police are working with Detroit police to boost security at all district schools “while a thorough investigation is conducted,” according to the notice.

Detroit police “don’t believe the threat to be credible,” said Officer Shanelle Williams, a spokeswoman for the department, although the FBI is involved in the investigation.

Detroit police plan to increase patrols at district schools Wednesday morning, she said. “The safety of the children of our city as well as all of the citizens is paramount. We’ll provide assistance as long as necessary.”

Tim Wiley, spokesman for the FBI’s field office in Detroit, said the threat came in via fax to a Detroit Public Schools building, and was a threat to the system as a whole.

Wiley declined to say what the fax threatened, though he did say the FBI “assesses no credibility to the threat,” which came to a single school. The FBI is working with local, state and federal law enforcement resources to notify districts that may receive similar threats. Wiley wasn’t sure about what time the faxed threat came in.

The FBI is working with area law enforcement to notify other districts, which may receive similar threats, Wiley said.

“Please be assured that the safety of our students and staff is our highest priority,” the district release read.

Anyone with questions is asked to call the DPSCD Command Center at (313) 748-6000.

Staff Writer James David Dickson contributed.