Schools take precautions after online threats; 17 year old arrested

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A 17 year old from Southhampton Township, Franklin County is now under arrest after state police said he’s responsible for posting online threats to “shoot-up” three elementary schools in Pennsylvania.

The schools weren’t specified in the posting, it just said “Carlisle Township, Pa,” so many schools across the state took extra precautions Thursday and Friday.

South Western School District in York County is just one of several districts in our area that had added police protection Friday.

“They had some unmarked cars around our schools and they had some regular unmarked cars around our school today,” said Dr. Barbara Rupp, South Western School District superintendent. “At no time did we really feel that we were in any danger, we were just taking precautions.”

Late Thursday night, the Carlisle Area School District in Cumberland County posted an alert on its website, saying the FBI has identified the person who posted the threats, but that the person did not have the capability to carry them out.

Friday, State police announced the arrest.

“I feel so much better now, since I know that they caught the person,” said Clarissa Larkin, who has four kids in the South Western School District.

Larkin said she was definitely concerned when she heard about the possible threat online.

“Of course me being a parent of four kids, I was really worried, especially with all of the shootings happening and stuff,” she said. “I make it a point now, when my kids leave to go to school to tell them I love them and give them a hug.”

Dr. Rupp wants to assure parents that school safety is a top priority in every district, especially now.

“We do everything we can to keep our schools safe, and have made even more changes and are considering more all the time to make sure our schools are safe,” she said. “They are a safe place for our children to be.”

The teen who posted the threats told police he did it to increase the conversation in the chat room. He’s now charged with making terroristic threats.

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