Nearly all Uvalde students picked up early by parents from school following gun-related threat


(UVALDE, Texas) — Over 90% of Uvalde students were picked up early by their parents or guardians from school Friday after a video was discovered circulating social media referencing threats to schools in the area, according to the district.

“These threats have caused families in our school district significant discomfort,” Uvalde Consolidated Independent School District spokesperson Anne Marie Espinoza said in a statement.

The posts, which included an individual with a gun, were first discovered Friday and originated in Del Rio, Texas, a city 70 miles west of Uvalde, Texas, and targeted several school districts including Uvalde, Del Rio and Eagle Pass. Several police agencies investigated the threats throughout the day, and determined they are not credible.

“Unfortunately, as the anniversary of the Uvalde tragedy approaches, we will see more people wanting to scare and disrupt our schools,” the San Felipe Del Rio CISD said in a press release.

Gladys Gonzales, a Uvalde parent, picked up her second-grade daughter from school after hearing about the threats. She said there were only a handful of students left in class when she picked her up. Her other daughter, who was a survivor of the Robb Elementary School mass shooting, was not in school Friday.

“It is nerve-racking every time there are threats,” Gonzales told ABC News. “Law enforcement need to take it serious every time. The fear is real.”

The posts also prompted the Uvalde school district to cancel their pep rally on May 12. The district did not implement an early release for the remaining 10% of students in order to prevent students from arriving at an empty home without guardian supervision.

“I think that fear is always going to be there and as much as we try to prepare ourselves, you can never be too safe,” said Gonzales.

The mass exodus from Uvalde schools Friday afternoon is indicative of a community still reeling from the mass shooting that killed 19 students and two of their teachers nearly one year ago. Uvalde Interim Superintendent Gary Patterson said in a statement that these types of situations are occurring at a high frequency rate. The district became aware of another threat on Snapchat that turned out to have originated in Florida on May 5. Patterson wrote that the post was an attempt to disrupt the school day and did not present any danger to students.

“We cannot afford to take anything for granted,” said Patterson in a statement about the most recent threat. “We expect social media threats to increase as we near our one-year date.”

The Uvalde school district has already elected to end the school year a few days early, so the buildings will be void of students and teachers on the one-year mark of the massacre.

ABC News’ MaryEllen Schwisow and Brian Mezerski contributed to this report.

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