Make a School Threat, Get Charged with a Felony, Go to Jail
Spokane Valley Sheriff’s School Resource Deputy investigated the newest school threat, an increasingly far too common and disturbing occurrence in our community. Working with school officials, the suspect, a 16-year-old student, was quickly identified and arrested. He was booked into the Spokane County Juvenile Detention Center, charged with a felony, Threats to Bomb or Injure Property.
*** Students be aware, if you make a threat toward a school, you WILL be arrested and booked into jail for felony charges. This is NOT funny nor a way to get a day off from school or to show you can’t be dared. It is a CRIME, and you will be arrested. ***
This morning, as school was preparing to begin, a note was found in a bathroom stating there would be a shooting at Central Valley High School. School staff and the School Resource Deputy David Lawhorn immediately began to investigate the threat and quickly identified a possible suspect.
The 16-year-old student admitted to leaving the threat in the bathroom. He said he came up with the idea because he didn’t want to give two class presentations during the day. No weapons or any other evidence showing he intended to harm anyone was located during the investigation.
He was arrested and booked into the Spokane County Juvenile Detention Center for Threats to Bomb or Injure Property, a felony. It should be noted, per Washington law (RCW 9.61.160), “It shall not be a defense to any prosecution under this section that the threatened bombing or injury was a hoax.”
As always, the safety of students and staff is the priority for the Central Valley School District, the Spokane Valley Police Department, and the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office. We will continue to work together, along with students, parents, and staff, toward providing a safe environment at our schools.
PARENTS: No one “thinks” their child would do something like this, but please, take the time to talk to your school-age children and explain the seriousness of making threats like this.
Addressing this community problem begins at home by making sure all of our children understand, actions have consequences. Making school threats will end with the person responsible, being arrested.
We all can agree students should be able to attend school, focused on learning, not worrying about their safety due to threats made by their classmates.