School threats can lead to stiff penalties

WHITLEY COUNTY, Ind. (WOWO): Local officials are warning about stiff penalties for those making threats against area schools, even if they’re fake.

In the two weeks since a Valentine’s Day massacre at a high school in Florida, area schools have been dealing with threats posted on social media. Whitko Community Schools was the latest, with a fake threat made Wednesday.

Whitley County Prosecutor D.J. Sigler tells our Partners in News at ABC 21 some may think it’s just a prank, but it’s no laughing matter:

“You’re facing some pretty serious trouble… whether you’ve got a troubled kid at home who isn’t getting the psych help that they need or isn’t getting the attention that they need from their parents and that manifests itself as a threat, or whether we’ve just got a bad kid whose got a lot of guns or a lot of violence in his past, we have to meet both of those, initially, with the same level of seriousness.”

Threatening a school will get you charged with intimidation, which ranges from a misdemeanor to a felony, depending on your age and how credible the threat is.

A teen in Van Wert County was arrested last week for such threats.

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