The Mankato Department of Public Safety is investigating two separate reports of assaults at Prairie Winds Middle School after receiving phone calls from parents of the victims Tuesday night.

DPS Commander Matt DuRose said, “The investigating officer took the initial reports, gathered some information; it’s been forwarded on to our school resource officer up there to continue with the investigation today (and) work with school officials at identifying all those that were involved with it.”

DuRose explained that it wasn’t a threat of a large-scale event, like has been reported in other area schools and, “There weren’t any threats outside of these isolated incidents of assaults between students. We believe we have everybody identified through the course of the initial investigation last night.”

Mankato Department of Public Safety Commander Matt DuRose.

Some parents have claimed in recent weeks that there is a threats and bullying problem at the middle school, but DuRose said these incidents don’t signal an ongoing and underlying problem at Prairie Winds. “There are certainly some sensitivities in the community – not necessarily just in our community but nationwide right now – I think that people are willing to speak up a little bit more right now and report things that are happened,” he said, and added, “I think that social media drives a lot of this.”

Depending upon what the investigation turns up, DuRose said the assault reports may be forwarded to the county attorney’s office for possible criminal charges.