NORMAN, Okla. (KFOR) — The University of Oklahoma confirmed Sunday night that 911 calls to police of an active shooter on campus Friday were a hoax. OU’s president Joseph Harroz, Jr. said in the letter it was swatting, which was where someone made a fake 911 call to draw a large police response.

The trend has started to grow across the country.       

Swarms of cop cars converged on OU’s campus after the report. Jacqueline Patton said she first saw five police cars fly by her work around 9 p.m. Friday night.

“We saw at least 10 more cops come down this road,” said Patton, and OU senior. “They were canvasing everything.”

Moments later Patton said she got a campus-wide text alert telling her to “take immediate action, now. Run. Hide. Fight!

Chaos continued as hundreds of law enforcement circled campus.

Image of police on OU campus
Law enforcement respond after alert sent by OU on possible active shooter. Image KFOR

“I know a lot of my friends were scared and concerned and I was getting concerned for them,” said Cecil Ehirindu, an OU senior.

Three separate law enforcement agencies told KFOR on the scene there was one person shot in the stomach. But OU confirmed later that was not the case and deemed the 911 calls to be fake.

In Harroz’s letter to the entire campus Sunday he said, “although the investigation will continue for some time, it is believed that the calls targeting our campus originated from outside of the United States.”

News 4 reached out to the FBI’s Oklahoma City division and they told us the FBI has investigated hundreds of these incidents of swatting, both inside and outside the United States. Many of the calls have targeted schools and universities.
Even though it was a hoax, students told News 4 that seeing the massive and swift response by police was comforting.

Image of police cars on campus of University of Oklahoma
Law enforcement responding to ‘active shooter’ alert sent by University of Oklahoma officials. Image KFOR

“I feel more reassured than in the fact that, like, I know that they’d be on the scene quick and with the utmost amount of time possible,” said Enirindu. The University said the investigation into who was behind the calls will continue and they will work closely with the FBI to track down those responsible.