KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Kalamazoo authorities say a string of threats made against Kalamazoo County school all started with a 14-year-old who made one threat and inspired copycats.
Threats were made against four schools in Kalamazoo Public Schools, and all schools were closed on Monday. A threat made against a Portage school also prompted school officials to close the campus on Tuesday.
The threats that were made on social media were eventually deemed to be not credible by law enforcement.
Police said a 14-year-old Kalamazoo resident was identified as the suspect from the original posting. The teen was lodged at the Kalamazoo County Juvenile Home.
On Tuesday, Nov. 12, a 16-year-old female was arrested in connection to an additional threat against Loy Norrix High School. She was also lodged in the Kalamazoo County Juvenile Home on a charge of making a terrorist threat.
Public safety officers identified the 16-year-old and executed a search warrant in the 1800 block of Vanzee Avenue. Several electronic devices are believed to have been used in the threats and were seized as evidence.
No weapons were located and it appears that the threat was not credible, police said.
The case is still ongoing, and additional suspects are being identified by law enforcement.
Police are asking parents to talk with their children about the serious nature of making a threat. "Joking about a threat or copying a threat that was posted elsewhere is just as serious as a credible threat," a news release said.
In Michigan, posting a terrorist threat—regardless of intention—is a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine of $20,000.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to contact Kalamazoo Public Safety at 337-8994 or Silent Observer at 343-2100, www.kalamazoosilentobserver.com.
Other stories on 13 ON YOUR SIDE:
- ‘Con man’ coin collector linked to $100,000 in losses in several states
- 2 people arrested in Big Rapids for using counterfeit money
- Ottawa County man now facing manslaughter charge after wife's death
►Make it easy to keep up to date with more stories like this. Download the 13 ON YOUR SIDE app now.