January 22, 2020

HCHS student facing serious charges after making threats

(Franklin, GA) — A 16-year-old Heard County High School student is facing serious charges after fellow students reported his verbal threats of school violence to officials Thursday.

Upon further investigation the Franklin Police Department charged the male student with one count of Disrupting Public School and one count of Terroristic Threats.

The student was only temporarily detained and released into the custody of his parents late Thursday evening. He is scheduled for a juvenile court appearance tomorrow in Franklin.

School officials and authorities believe the threats in this case may have been the result of just bad judgment or a bad joke but warn that these type of actions will not be tolerated. Multiple students reported the verbal threats.

“Late Thursday afternoon, we learned of a conversation in class where a student made comments that potentially threatened school safety. We immediately responded by gathering statements, interviewing students, and included the FPD in our investigation,” said Heard High Principal Brent Tisdale in a written statement Saturday.

“The student was not allowed to continue the school day and left campus with the FPD. The school has taken disciplinary actions to ensure that the student is no longer on campus. School safety is a priority at HCHS and in light of recent national events I can’t stress enough how seriously we take these kinds of comments, whether made jokingly or not” added Principal Tisdale.

According to Franklin Police Chief Kevin Hannah, an investigation of the student’s home and into his history/background did not reveal anything to suggest the student had made any actual plans of violence. His name is not being released to the public due to him being a minor.

Chief Hannah says law enforcement have been dealing with these type of incidents more and more lately and commends the students for reporting the behavior. He adds that even the reporting student witnesses did not believe the student meant real harm, but did not want to take any chances.

“The teenagers who reported this did the right thing,” says Chief Hannah. “Any student or adult that hears a threat or sees anything concerning posted via social media should always contact a school official and/or law enforcement so that we can fully investigate.”

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