The system set up in Springboro in response to school threats in Warren County and real shootings around the U.S. is working, school officials said on Wednesday.
“What we’ve told our parents and our students: If you see something, say something,” Scott Marshall, the district’s communications director said. “What we are communicating is working.”
Marshall was responding to questions raised after an 11-year-old Springboro student, accused of threatening to use a gun on a school bus last Friday — the same day 10 people were fatally shot at a school in Texas — was released from detention.
The case was triggered by a report from a student passed onto transportation staff, Marshall said.
On Friday, the Clearcreek Twp. boy is alleged to have said he had a gun in his backpack while riding the bus home from Springboro Intermediate School and “asked if he should use it,” then “reached into his bag and used his fingers to simulate guns,” according to court records.
On Tuesday, he was charged in Warren County Juvenile Court with making false alarms and disorderly conduct, according to court records. He spent two hours in detention before being released to his parents, according to court officials.
Judge Joe Kirby ordered a lawyer be appointed to represent the boy, who denied the allegations and was ordered to attend an educational and monitoring program at the detention center in Lebanon until school lets out in Springboro. Kirby also placed the boy on house arrest, pending a hearing on June 13.
Some districts have sent out districtwide communications after similar incidents.
Marshall said communications about the case were limited to families of students on the bus with the boy charged. He said district makes communications on a “case-by-case basis” and decided to limit notifications due to the low threat level.
It was the latest of about 15 school threat court cases in Warren County since the shooting deaths at Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School in Florida and first since the school shooting on Friday at Sante Fe High School in Texas, court records show.
On Monday, an 11-year-old Kings Mills student admitted to an aggravated menacing charge in a case stemming from an April 24 incident in which the boy threatened “to shoot up the school ” at Columbia Intermediate School and make a teacher “his first target,” according to court records.
Kirby barred the boy from having access to weapons and continued a no-contact order, but suspended a 45-day detention sentence, provided the boy complies with probation conditions.
The boy is to complete 20 hours of community service, comply with any rules set out by the school and pay $65 in court costs.
The school year is ending this week in districts around Warren County, including today in the Springboro district.
While this will end the string of new threat cases filed as a result of incidents in local districts, pending cases will be heard this summer.