Henrico Police on 911 auto-tweet of school shooting hoax: ‘they are necessary’

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. -- Marked and unmarked police cars and ambulances lined Woodman Road in Henrico County on Monday afternoon. It was a huge response - generated by a text and a subsequent tweet on the Henrico Police Twitter Page that said there was an active shooter at Moody Middle School.

Crime Insider sources said the phone used to type the text belonged to a 12-year-old girl and was traced to a classroom on the first floor.

When high priority 911 texts or calls are received, Henrico Police's Communications Center sends out an automatically generated tweet.

"When our emergency dispatch center receives a priority one call - whether it be a robbery, a shooting or an active shooter like today it sends out a message to the public to let them know what police are responding to and why," Henrico Police Spokesperson Matthew Pecka said.


Twitter users were upset - but  .

But Pecka said they are necessary to keep the public safe and informed.

"It's very important for partnership with schools and police and all first respondents to communicate and to make sure credible information is being delivered in a timely manner to our community," Pecka said.

Crime Insider Sources said the 12-year-old girl has not yet been charged.

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