Virginia military school cancels class after threat from ISIS

A prestigious Virginia- based Hargrave Military Academy was shut down last Friday due to ISIS-linked terror threats made on their social media page on Tuesday of the same week.

According to GoDanRiver, The school preemptively declared last weekend an “open weekend” in response to the incident, permitting cadets to leave campus Thursday evening. While weekend passes were supposed to be reserved for high-performing students, Hargrave officials extended it to all cadets.

School president Brigadier General Don Broome said that following the issuance of the threat, “the first thing we did is contact law enforcement.” Local and federal authorities are investigating, and Hargrave officials are communicating with them and following their instructions.

“We put together a contact information sheet for our parents, letting them know what was going on”, Broome said. “We gathered our faculty and staff and briefed them”

Broome said he expects the “investigations will be concluded swiftly and the threat addressed appropriately.”

“We’ll work with law enforcement and we’ll assess the threat. If we believe this to be some type of hoax, then we’ll move forward and go back to regular operations next week,” he said.

“While we expect the threat — purportedly linked to ISIS — will eventually be shown to be without substance, we are not willing to take that chance,” Broome said in the letter.

The letter from Broome told parents they would see “a significant presence from our local law enforcement” and there are additional protections in place for cadets who remain on campus.

“We will be restricting access to our campus, our buildings and our cadets for the entire weekend,” Broome wrote in the letter. “Movement on campus will also be restricted.” The letter also asks parents and families to refrain from posting or commenting on social media, as doing so “will allow law enforcement to better focus their investigation.”

Broome said that school officials will review all safety and security measures “to ensure the maximum protection possible for our students and staff.”

As of Monday (22FEB2016) morning no arrests have been made and classes have resumed. The Pittsylvania County Sheriff’s Office told WSET they are working on several leads and promised that his office will find the person behind the threats.

Hargrave Military Academy is an all-boys preparatory school founded in 1909 has a total of 247 cadets enrolled.

The Academy’s Public Affairs Officer could not be reached for comment.

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  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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