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Autocorrect Fail In Text Message Puts Georgia Schools On Lockdown

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 03/ 1/2012 3:39 pm Updated: 03/ 2/2012 2:35 am

West Hall middle and high schools in Oakwood, Ga. were put on lockdown Wednesday afternoon -- because of an auto-corrected text message.

A smartphone autocorrected the word "gunna" to "gunman," the Gainesville Times reports. The full, accidental text, reading "gunman be at west hall today," was reported to police around 11:30 a.m. The text message was also sent to the wrong phone number -- adding to the misinterpretation.

Despite the mixup, the school district maintains they followed proper procedure in going on lockdown.

"The school system always relies on law enforcement for school safety and anytime they request a lockdown we go with that request," Gordon Higgins, Hall County Schools spokesman told the Times. "We always take every precaution concerning a potential threat or danger."

ABC News reports that the lockdown was lifted within a few hours after authorities tracked down the sender and determined the autocorrect mistake.

Authorities say no malice was intended by the gaffe.

"Our investigators followed up the leads pretty quickly, and they were able to determine that the texts came from a student from Lanier Technical College," Sgt. Stephen Wilbanks of the Hall County Sheriff's Department told WXIA TV. "There was no malicious intent whatsoever; no harm was done. The school was shut down for a couple of hours, and then everything was opened back up."

The station also reports it's unlikely any charges will be filed.

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