Juvenile arrested in school bomb threat case

STAFF REPORT :::

A juvenile has been arrested and charged in connection with the bomb threat that resulted in the Aug. 9 Level 2 lock down of Rehoboth Road Middle School (RRMS).

Officials have identified the suspect as the same juvenile male arrested during the 2018-2019 school system for making multiple threats against numerous schools.

After Friday’s threat was received, administrators of the Griffin-Spalding County School System (GSCSS) notified the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office. SCSO personnel and RRMS staff searched the school, and the GSCSS Instructional Technology Department (IT) immediately began tracking the source of the threat.

According to a joint press release issued by the GSCSS and Sheriff Darrell Dix, the tracking determined the threat had come from within the school system.

Information provided by IT staff resulted in deputies responding to A.Z. Kelsey Alternative School where the suspect was taken into custody less than two hours after the threat was made.

“The suspect taken into custody was the same individual that was taken into custody for a series of threats called in to schools across the county last school year. Due to his age, the court system was limited in what they could do to him as punishment. By order of the court, he was restricted from using electronic devices of any kind and could not attend any school in the system other than the alternative school until given permission by the court. It appears that in this case he used a school system device to log in and send the threat, then immediately logged back out,” Dix said. “After he was taken into custody, he was carried in front of Juvenile Judge Ben Miller who ordered that he be detained until a hearing for him could be set up. He has been in a juvenile justice facility since Friday afternoon awaiting his hearing.”

GSCS Superintendent Jim Smith said he is pleased with the response from all involved that resulted in such a quick resolution.

“For me, the real story is the rapid and effective response of the Rehoboth Road Middle School staff, Griffin-Spalding County Schools’ IT Department, and the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office in unraveling the threat so quickly. The Griffin-Spalding County School System will continue to partner with the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office in doing all we can to keep our schools a safe environment for students, parents, and staff,” Smith said. “For the safety of everyone, we are asking all families to please take this opportunity to talk to their child about the danger and consequences of making threats, as well as using electronic devices inappropriately that could cause disrupt the learning environment.”

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