Just one day after 17 died at the hands of a horrific high school shooting in Parkland, Florida, police confirmed that an American flag was torn down on Hurricane High School grounds in Washington County, Utah. It was damaged and replaced with an ISIS flag early Thursday morning.
"ISIS is comi [sic]" was also spray painted outside of the school. Whether it was a prank or a deliberate act of terror, the Hurricane City Police Department (HCPD) says this is an ongoing investigating, and the vandal reportedly has yet to be identified.
NEW: Vandal(s) still out there after writing this on a #Hurricane High School wall & pulling down the American flag of the school flag pole and replacing it with an ISIS flag.— D.J. Bolerjack (@DJBolerjack) February 15, 2018
📸 -> @HurricaneUtPD pic.twitter.com/Cfv8ooURFB
"It's very strange for us to think an ISIS flag could fly here at one of our schools, very strange," Steve Dunham, Communication and Public Relations Director for Washington County School District, told Good4Utah. "We're working completely with the Police Department on this. We're shocked and disgusted."
The vandalism happened around 3:00 a.m. HCPD Officer Ken Thompson said to a local news station Thursday, suggesting that the person (or people) responsible most likely meant to write, "ISIS is coming," outside of the school but ran off before finishing.
He confirmed that the message had been removed and that investigators and officers remained at the school following the discovery of these acts.
"We don’t think that at this time there’s any danger at the school," Thompson said. Classes were held on Thursday and Friday as scheduled.
Thompson told St. George News that, "At the very least, whoever did this could face criminal mischief charges for the damage to the school property." The vandal could also face penalities for desecration of the American flag.
"I don’t know where this particular one came from," Thompson said of the ISIS flag, which is currently being held as evidence. "It could have been homemade, it could have been bought on the Internet," claiming that he was told you can even buy an ISIS flag on Amazon.
In June 2015, reports alleged that this might have been possible at one point.
However, search results do not currently came up for "ISIS flag" or "Islamic State flag" (except for some supposedly funny "f—ck ISIS" merchandise).
"HCPD investigators sent an image of the flag to the FBI who analyzed it, based on information we received from the FBI we do not believe this act was perpetrated by someone linked to the Islamic State," the HCPD said in a statement posted to Facebook Thursday afternoon. "This investigation is ongoing and investigators will continue to follow-up on leads."
Further details could not be given to Metro at this time from the HCPD.
Hurricane High School directed Metro to the Washington County School District Office, who could not be reached for immediate comment.
The HCPD urges anyone with information regarding the incident to call their dispatch center at 435-627-4999.