Battle Ground boy arrested for threats against teacher, school - KPTV - FOX 12

Battle Ground boy arrested for threats against teacher, school

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Battle Ground police arrested a student for threats made against Chief Umtuch Middle School.

Police said a 13-year-old student made threats online about physical harm to a teacher and the school. He was arrested and released to his parents, who are cooperating with the investigation.

A total of six schools were under an emergency closure order Wednesday after a decision made by the school district and police.

Lt. Roy Butler said the boy's computer was seized and the case file would be forwarded to prosecutors for charges of felony harassment.

Butler said the student did not possess the capability to carry out his threats.

The boy's identity has not yet been released by police. A motive was also not revealed.

On Tuesday, an automated message was sent to parents informing them of a suicide threat at Chief Umtuch School.

"They're saying they found a suicide note or something that some student wrote, but they didn't have a name on it," one student told FOX 12. "They called [parents] to talk to kids about if it was your kid."

"It has been determined that the young man is not suicidal," Butler said.

School administrators who were looking into the suicide threat then learned of the threat against the school, and that led officials and police to decide to close the schools Wednesday.

Chief Umtuch Middle School, Captain Strong Primary School, Summit View Middle School, CAM Academy and Battle Ground High School all shut down for the day. They are within several blocks of each other, north of downtown Battle Ground's Main Street. The nearby Firm Foundation Christian School on 199th Street also announced a closure due to the threat.

About 3,850 students were told to stay home while police searched the schools. By noon, the district said the inspections of the schools had been completed.

The FBI was consulted, and Battle Ground police said the bureau provided tips that led to the suspect. There are no other suspects in this case, according to investigators.

"We've determined through our investigation he didn't have the means or the capability," Butler said. "As far as we can tell, this will close the matter."

The district sent a letter to parents saying school would resume on Thursday. The school resource officer will be present on campus through the end of the week at the middle school.

"We will make every effort to connect school counseling services to all students in need," the letter states. Further updates will be posted here.

The investigation into the threats follows a series of suicides in Battle Ground. Six Battle Ground School District students, including two Chief Umtuch students, committed suicide between February 2011 and January 2013.

In addition, a teenager was arrested and convicted for a bomb threat earlier this year. In February, students and staff were sent home for a day after a janitor found a threat scrawled on a bathroom stall at Battle Ground High School. Eighteen-year-old Luke Love was sentenced to one month in jail for writing the note.

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