Mainland High School shooting scare was a “cruel prank”, law enforcement officials said after investigating the incident for days. The Daytona Beach Police Department gave a detailed breakdown of the situation, explaining that a group of students triggered the false alarm.

In a lengthy social media post, officials said that a threat was discovered inside a bathroom stall on Thursday. Police narrowed down the search to two unnamed students, who were seen entering the bathroom before the graffiti was discovered. They denied involvement. Police determined that no threat existed.

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The situation escalated on Friday. Two groups of students “decided to capitalize” on the previous threat and create a panic. “The groups can clearly be seen on video, getting into specific positions and locations within the cafeteria, timing their actions”, the police said.

The statement added, “Several female students walk towards the school administrator laughing and smiling, all the way, up until they reached the administrator, at which point one of the females tells the administrator that someone had a gun.”

After interviewing all “pranksters” involved, the police said no one could identify the individual they had previously seen carrying a gun. The statement said most people also changed their statements and said that they had only heard about someone carrying a gun.

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Officials said that an unspecified number of pranksters may face charges for making a false report concerning the use of firearms in a violent manner. They may also face expulsion from Mainland High School, Florida.

“Despite this being a false alarm, we will increase our law enforcement presence at the school on Monday to ensure that everything goes smoothly”, the Daytona Beach Police Department said in a statement. Law enforcement officials added that the incident was hyped up by “internet trolls and misinformed people.”