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home : news : state news free March 21, 2018

3/8/2018 1:08:00 PM
Another Illinois teen makes school threats; authorities say threats are no joke

O’FALLON, Ill. (AP) — A 15-year-old southern Illinois boy is in custody and faces felony charges after authorities say he made threats against an elementary school.

Officials say the teen wrote graffiti on J Emmett Hinchcliffe Sr. Elementary School in O’Fallon, including a threatening message and explicit and vulgar drawings. He is charged with making a terrorist threat, attempt of making a terrorist threat, disorderly conduct and criminal defacement of property.

St. Clair County State’s Attorney Brendan Kelly on Wednesday called it “a serious, serious threat.” Police say the teen appeared in juvenile court and was sent to juvenile detention center. O’Fallon Police Chief Eric Van Hook said the teen “had no intention” of carrying out the threats.

School officials say the threats panicked the community and students were kept home from school.

Authorities say threats will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law

 Illinois authorities are reminding people that threatening to hurt students or anyone else at a school is no joke.

State associations representing Illinois police chiefs, sheriffs and state’s attorneys issued a news release Wednesday. They say law enforcement takes threats of school violence seriously, no matter the age of the person making them or whether they intended it as a prank.

They warn that threats made personally or through social media or other means will be investigated and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The crime is punishable by years in prison.

The statement comes less than a month after 17 people died in a shooting at a Florida high school.

The Florida Legislature officially delivered a gun-control  bill today to Florida Governor Rick Scott, who has 15 days to sign the bill, veto it or let it become law without his signature.

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