GRAY — Students and staff at Gray-New Gloucester Middle School were evacuated to the high school Wednesday after a bomb threat was discovered in a boys’ bathroom stall, according to the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office.
No bombs or explosive devices were found in the school after a search by the Sheriff’s Office and Maine State police, the release says. Two explosive detecting canines were used in the search.
“On Wednesday, March 7, we had a serious incident at the middle school. Someone left a very descriptive bomb threat note in one of the bathrooms,” said SAD 15 Superintendent Craig King in a message to the school community. “Students were immediately evacuated to the high school. Investigators from the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office and the Maine State Police arrived immediately. Within two hours, the law enforcement officials had determined the building was safe for re-entry. Shortly thereafter, law enforcement had identified and charged the person they believe to be responsible for the crime.”
The Sheriff’s Office said that a 13-year-old male middle school student was identified as a subject and has been charged with class C terrorizing.
“The threatening message was written on a stall in the boys’ bathroom and was found by a student,” said the police press release. “The threat referenced that the school was ‘getting bombed,’ with an emphasis to take the threat seriously.”
Police said that the incident took place around 1 p.m. and that middle school students were later dismissed for the day from the high school.
“I wish to extend my personal thanks to our law enforcement officials and MSAD 15 personnel for their quick and effective response to this threat,” King added. “I also thank the students and parents for their support and understanding as law enforcement and school officials addressed this crisis.”
King also acknowledged that an initial message alerting the school community to the situation only went out through email — and should have also been sent by text and recorded phone call.
“We do our best to provide clear, factual information in a timely manner to parents when these emergencies occur,” King said. “In this case, we sent a School Messenger that communicated with parents through e-mail only. The communication should have been sent through e-mail, text message, and recorded phone call. This is an error we have since corrected.”
Matt Junker can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter: @MattJunker.
Gray-New Gloucester Middle School students and staff were evacuated to the high school on Wednesday, March 7 after a bomb threat was discovered in a boys’ bathroom. No explosive devices or bomb was found and a 13-year-old student was charged with terrorizing.