Despite rumors, school is under no impending threat

JA Police Car 1-30

Photo by Joseph Anderson

By Kendra Schwartz, Ashley Hocking and Joseph Anderson

Administrators say two students allegedly made threatening remarks on Wednesday, Jan. 29.

Assistant principal Mike Norris said although there have been about 12 police officers in the building at any given time today, the students who allegedly made the remarks are no longer on campus.

“What has been reported is that some students allegedly made some threatening remarks about the school that concerned some parents who were able to contact me early this morning,” Norris said. “At that point, we [administrators and law enforcement] basically just grabbed the kids and pulled them in [for] an interview.”

Although Norris was notified by some parents before second hour began today, rumors were already buzzing as to what the threats were. Some parents even went as far as to pull their students out of class.

“By the time we got these calls, the situation was dealt with,” Norris said. “By the time the rumor mill gets around, the problem’s already been dealt with. I assume we had kids texting parents and those sorts of things. By the time parents called, our secretarial staff was able to talk to the parents and communicate what it says in the press release and that everybody’s safe and there were no issues.”

Rumors flew all the way to Free State High School this morning.

“There were a lot of concerned parents to the point that Free State has gotten calls from parents, ‘Do I need to get my kids out of school?’ ” Norris said.

Norris said some tweets incorrectly said there were bomb threats or even shootings — none of which was true. Other rumors circulated, saying there had been a threat of a school shooting, but sources said there weren’t any weapons involved or even threatened. At this time, there is no clear evidence that serious threats were even made by the two students.

“Because we get a report that threats were made, it doesn’t mean that threats were actually made,” Norris said. “There is a very probable situation where there might not be any reprimanding because the kids didn’t actually do anything wrong.”

As a result of the ambiguity, the two students who were pulled out of class have yet to be reprimanded further.

“If there’s a consequence that needs to happen, it’ll happen,” Norris said. “But I’m not saying there’s necessarily a consequence that needs to happen.”

Because the school’s security footage does not include audio, police cannot be sure what was said yesterday by these individuals. However, students have their own guesses as to what occurred.

“I posted on Facebook that two kids had threatened the school and I got a comment that said, ‘Those guys were removed hours ago, you should not even be worried about that,’ ” junior Clara Cobb said. “For everyone that’s at this school, they deserve to know what’s going on.”

Other students, like junior Jack Rischer, are less worried about a threat because administrators have confirmed the safety of the campus.

“Well, I heard a lot of theories,” Rischer said. “It could have been a bomb threat or a shooting, but we’re obviously still in school so there is nothing to worry about.”

Overall, although threats may have been made yesterday, today, Lawrence High remains just as safe as any other day, Norris said.

“There was no impending threat,” Norris said. “No one had weapons, nothing of that nature; just some kids that made some remarks that were concerning.”