Social media fuels fears of Friday violence

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by Andrew Horansky / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on December 21, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Updated Friday, Dec 21 at 9:28 PM

HOUSTON -- School districts across greater Houston stepped up their security on Friday. It was not over a specific threat, rather, the possibility of one.

For days, parents and students were bracing for the possibility of another school shooting. Social media fueled much of the speculation.

“It’s just always there in the back of your mind,” parent Faith Guerra said.

Locally, districts such as Katy and LaPorte sent out releases to the media saying the threats were bogus.

Yet some parents did not take chances.

Shelly Horton and her husband Nathan kept their two kids home from Katy schools on Friday.

“There’s so much to worry about,” Nathan Horton said. “So many more ways people can get to our children.”

“It causes, you know, all caution to the wind,” Shelly Horton said. “You’re going to do what you have to do to protect them.”

For some families, there were fears of a copycat on the one-week anniversary of the Newtown, Connecticut massacre. Others feared the outside chance of someone doing something violent to mark 12-21-12.

Either way, the fears have existed for days.

Earlier this week, parents kept kids home from Willis High School in Montgomery County over rumors there.

“I’m worried that somebody is gonna come to our school with a gun,” student Colby Clarkston said at the time.

On Friday, the NRA attempted to assuage such fears at a press conference in Washington.

The agency’s top lobbyist suggested the solution to school shootings is an armed guard at every school.

 

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