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Fort Hood soldier threatens leadership, sparks rumor of active shooter

By JESSICA SCHLADEBECK | New York Daily News | Published: September 17, 2020

NEW YORK (Tribune News Service) — A brief moment of panic ensued at Fort Hood on Thursday after rumors of an active shooter rippled across the Texas base and social media alike.

Director of Public Affairs Tom Rheinlander in a tweet said there was no gunman at the U.S. Army base, noting that they found no evidence any shots had been fired.

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He said the rumors were likely set off by an active-duty soldier, who “made homicidal threats toward his leadership.”

The suspect is currently “in the custody of Fort Hood law enforcement," Rheinlander added.

According to local media outlet KWKT, a malfunctioning alarm may have also sparked the unnecessary panic.

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The chaos prompted at least one school, Meadows Elementary, to go into lockdown around 10:30 a.m. The Killeen School District in a tweet referencing the incident said officials quickly learned there was no shooter on the nearby base.

Fort Hood has faced scrutiny in recent weeks, particularly over the disappearance of Army Spc. Vanessa Guilllén, who vanished from her post in April. After months of searching, authorities discovered her dismembered remains in June.

Ahead of her disappearance, Guillén told her family that she was being sexually harassed by a superior. Army officials, however have denied any link between the sexual harassment allegations and Guillén’s disappearance.

Her death is one of several investigations underway at the facility.

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