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High school football game between Coatesville-Downingtown West canceled due to safety threats

High school football game between Coatesville-Downingtown West cancelled due to online threats
High school football game between Coatesville-Downingtown West cancelled due to online threats 02:03

COATESVILLE, Pa. (CBS) -- In Chester County, a high school football game was canceled Friday after police say a number of credible safety threats were made.

Coatesville High School was set to play Downingtown West High School, however, no one will be at the stadium.

Coatesville area schools describe the threats as "online chatter" exchanged between students at both high schools. The district says police were so concerned, they recommended canceling the game to the disappointment of parents and alumni.

It was supposed to be a big Friday night under the lights at Coatesville High School's Memorial Stadium.

A homecoming football game against long-time rival Downingtown West was canceled due to safety threats.

"It's disappointing," Ron Kummerer, a Coatesville High parent and alumnus, said. "All the work that goes into this and the anticipation of the fun night. It's disappointing for the community, for the students. It's something that we really look forward to."

 Police aren't saying what exactly was said in those threats. School administrators originally decided to still host the game but without any spectators.

Coatesville High School dismissed early for the day so they could prepare to shut down the campus, but the district says after they made that announcement, police received additional information that made the district change its mind and cancel the game.

While Kummerer agrees with administrators' decision, recent alumnus Azlyn Hayes felt the game should've still been played, saying any comments exchanged between the schools' student bodies are just part of the years-long rivalry.

"It's people's senior year," Hayes said. "Like, it's their last time going to be able to watch and play in a football game, so I don't think it's right at all."

Coatesville says homecoming activities scheduled for tomorrow will continue to go on as scheduled.

Richard Dunlap, the interim superintendent of the Coatesville School District, issued a letter to the school community. 

"I am very disappointed to have to make this decision. Again, after meeting with law enforcement, we simply cannot ensure adequate safety based on these threats. We are pleading with parents to please monitor your children's social media accounts and speak with them about the serious nature of making threats. Any students found to be responsible for threats will be disciplined in accordance with our policies. We take these matters very seriously," Dunlap wrote. 

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