CLEVELAND, Ga. – A seventh-grade student at White County Middle School, who was arrested last week for making terrorist threats is scheduled to appear in White County Juvenile Court tomorrow (Friday, Oct. 13).
The student, who is not identified due to his age, allegedly told a classmate he planned to shoot up the school and that she would be the first one shot.
White County School Superintendent Dr. Jeff Wilson declined to answer questions regarding the incident but instead, issued the following prepared statement:
“On Wednesday afternoon last week, a threat was made by a White County Middle School student. The administration met with the students involved and addressed the issue. The student who made the threat was sent home while the incident was investigated further. After further investigation on Thursday morning, the school contacted law enforcement. WCMS students were safe throughout the process. The safety of our students is our number one priority and we work diligently to keep our teachers and students safe.”
According to a spokesman for the Cleveland Police Department, the boy was arrested then released to his parents but ordered to wear an ankle bracelet
The mother of the girl who reported the threat asked not to be identified for fear of retribution. She did say that she was upset with school officials because her daughter reported the threat to a teacher and a support coordinator Wednesday morning. But the mother said she wasn’t told of the incident until Wednesday evening when the coordinator called her.
“I asked to meet with the school Principal Kristi Gerrells Thursday morning,” the mother told Fetch Your News. “When I did, I was told that she wanted to wait until the School Resource Officer returned from vacation on Monday before contacting the police. I said that was unacceptable and I thought parents should be made aware of the threat immediately.”
The mother added, “I felt like the way she handled it was inappropriate. She made me feel like I was wasting my time. She also said she appreciated me not posting it on social media because we don’t need a bunch of stirred up parents. I felt like she just wanted to cover it up. But I think this is something parents need to know.”
This is the second time this year school officials reacted to a threat at the same school. A threat made on social media in March prompted a request for additional security. At the time, Wilson said the threat was investigated it and determined not to be credible.
Fetch Your News is a hyper local news outlet that covers Dawson, Lumpkin, White, Fannin, Gilmer, Pickens, Union, Towns and Murray counties as well as Cherokee County in N.C. If you would like to follow up-to-date local events in any of those counties, please visit us at FetchYourNews.com