Texas is the newest target of “The Purge” threat which has circulated throughout the country.
“The Purge,” in reference to the 2013 movie and its sequel “The Purge: Anarchy,” released this summer, both portray a futuristic version of America in which the government sanctions a 12-hour period each year during which all crime is allowed without punishment and all emergency services are shut down.
Earlier this month, the first purge threat was made in Louisville, Kentucky where, although it was nothing but a hoax, the threat began gaining momentum in other parts of the country, such as Illinois, California, Ohio, Delaware and now Texas.
Although the threat has been made against the entire state via Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, the areas most plagued include Huntsville, Conroe, New Waverly and The Woodlands.
The event is set to take place Aug. 29.
According to University Police Department Investigative Detective Chanda Brown, UPD was made aware of this threat early last week.
“We will respond to incidents as we always do, should we be made aware of a situation,” Brown said. “If the situation dictates, we are always prepared to increase our presence by having additional officers present during a specific time, and our special response team is always prepared to respond to incidents as needed.”
“I heard about it through Facebook and was a little freaked out,” senior business major Summer Styles said. “It’s scary when it’s in your own city. I think it’s probably a hoax, but we should still take safety precautions.”
Brown said that whether or not the purge threat becomes a reality in Huntsville, UPD is prepared to keep the campus of Sam Houston State University safe as well as keeping students and staff informed.
“If necessary, the Kat Safe system will be activated,” she said. “We encourage students to make sure their information is update with the Kat Safe Notification system. Students can always check our Facebook page, ‘SHSU University Police Department’, for information.”
According to Brown, simple things like programming the UPD phone number and emergency number into their cell phones can aid in keeping students safe and communication open.
“Individuals should always be aware of suspicious activity and be aware of what is happening around them and report suspicious activity to the police,” Brown said. “We encourage everyone to always monitor their surroundings regardless if there is some type of threat or supposed threat.”
Brown said that regardless of whether or not there is a threat, students should always be careful and cautious.
“Unfortunately, an individual can become the victim of a crime at any time, and should always take proper precautions to protect themselves,” Brown said. “If students see anything suspicious or an incident occurring they should contact the University Police Department or our Emergency number.”
UPD can be reached at 936-294-1794 or at their emergency line at 936-294-1000.