A custodian saw the threatening graffiti first and then quickly alerted school officials at Dos Pueblos High School in Goleta last week.
The graffiti was found in the girl’s bathroom on the evening of Nov. 7, 2018. The markings referenced a school shooting on Friday, Nov. 9.
The Santa Barbara Unified School District notified the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office. Deputies, along with the school resource deputy, conducted an investigation. It was determined the threat was “not credible,” according to SBUSD Safety Coordinator Kelly Moore.
The next morning, on Thursday, Nov. 8th, Principal Bill Woodard sent an email to parents stating what happened, and the investigation’s findings.
The graffiti threat at the high school came just hours before 12 people were killed at The Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks.
Although authorities would not release the exact wording of the threat, parents and students were alarmed.
School District officials didn’t provide a specific number but approximated that one-third of students stayed home from Dos Pueblos High School on Friday, Nov. 9.
“That’s our biggest challenge, to determine if these threats are credible. But, once we determine they are credible, it’s up to parents or children to determine what makes them feel safe and whether they are going to attend school,” Moore said.
Moore said the district takes all threats seriously and investigates each one that is reported alongside the Sheriff’s Office.
But, Moore said the district believes all schools within its jurisdiction are inherently safe.
“We have to be diligent and vigilant with how we address these things from our perspective,” Moore said. “We are safe, but we are improving our systems looking at all of our safety plans and standardizing our responses to these types of incidents.”
The investigation is still ongoing and the person or persons responsible could face arrest for making criminal threats.