SUU Investigates Reported School Shooter Threat with FBI; Lockdown Lifted2 min read

By Tracie Sullivan,

CEDAR CITY — Collaborating with local law enforcement, the FBI is actively investigating a reported school threat at Southern Utah University Thursday to determine its legitimacy or if it originated from Germany as a swatting hoax.
The university initiated a lockdown at around 9:20 a.m. subsequent to receiving a “suspicious phone call” alleging an active shooter presence on campus.
Authorities later confirmed no credible threats and released the students, however, all classes and school activities were canceled for the remainder of the day. Normal operations are anticipated to resume on Friday.
“In order to allow everyone to care for themselves, SUU has closed its campus for the remainder of the day, including canceling all classes, activities, and services,” an update stated.
The school’s alert system sent out the first warning at 9:36 a.m., later sending out notice of a suspect fitting the description of a “white male with black hat, black shades, green t-shirt, long hair, blue jeans, 20-25 years old.”
At 10 a.m. officials received reports of noises sounding like shots fired at the Science Building, but after an investigation, the school confirmed that no shots had been fired and that the Science Building was “fully cleared.”
As of midday, Cedar City Public Information Officer Justin Ludlow affirmed an ongoing “active investigation” as officers systematically “cleared” the campus’ approximately 20 buildings along with housing facilities.
After the incident was resolved, officials said it was, “highly unlikely that the possible suspect was actually involved in this threat.”
Hours later, just after noon, lockdown began to be lifted as officials cleared individual buildings on campus.
Additionally, the Iron County School District issued a notification to parents via a text message around 9:20 a.m., informing them of the lockdown across all area schools in Cedar City and Enoch in response to “a police incident in the area.”
“As a precautionary measure, all access points are secured, and no one is permitted to enter or exit the premises. Instructional activities will proceed within the confines of the school. Students may encounter restrictions on leaving the premises for off-campus classes,” the district announced.
The lockdown was lifted approximately two hours later
“Operations have returned to normal; it was a preemptive measure. No threats were directed towards Iron County District schools,” the district said.
The university had been previously entangled in a statewide swatting incident in 2023, an issue Ludlow said will likely continue to happen.
“This kind of thing is going to keep happening because these people are waiting for us, the police, not to do something and we are going to continue doing something,” Ludlow said.
An investigation is underway to determine exact details surrounding the suspicious call.


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