Prank causes tense moments for thousands of Capital Region students, family members

Several school districts across the Capital Region were victims of calls Thursday morning that falsely reported an active shooter, investigators said.

That includes Albany, Troy, East Greenbush and others.

That sent the schools into lockdown and parents, students and teachers into a panic.

At one of those schools – Maple Hill High in East Greenbush – East Greenbush Police, New York State Police and SWAT teams were all sent to the campus.

Meantime, anxious parents waited outside for updates, as students inside the building wondered what was happening.

School administrators later announced the calls were a prank, but school would remain under lockdown and no students released until a final headcount was made.

Parents told NewsChannel 13 prank calls or not, the fear of their child falling victim to an active shooter situation is unthinkable.

Paul Szkalenka, a parent, said he received worried texts from his daughter inside the high school, who was in a locker room.

“This is just an unbelievable incident. I can’t believe it’s happened here,” Szkalenka said.

“It’s kind of mind-boggling to see this stuff so close to home,” said Dylan Chatman, whose grandmother works at the school.

Meanwhile, police in Troy received a report of an active shooter at Troy High School.

Law enforcement conducted a search of both Troy High School and middle school, and determined there was no threat and the hold in place order was lifted.

It was a similar scene outside Albany High School.

Albany Police and State Police responded to the school for reports of an active shooter.

The reports are completely unfounded, police said, and the building is safe for students and staff.

Once police swept the building, students were put in a “hold in place” drill for the first period. Since then, everything has returned to normal.