MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WDTN) — School safety has taken center stage across the country and in the Miami Valley in the past week. A student is accused of killing four classmates at a Michigan high school, and there have been several threats at Miami Valley schools since then. Local leaders recommend being proactive even if those threats are not always credible.
“It’s important to realize there is no prank like this anymore. Those days are over,” said Montgomery County Sheriff Rob Streck.
Within one week after the Oxford High School shooting in Michigan, several statements made by students across Miami Valley schools districts were considered threatening in nature, including one at Centerville High School.
“As soon as we had the information, school administration staff and our resource officers worked together and within minutes they made everything safe. Thankfully there was never a real threat, but it was posted on social media and unfortunately, there was a weapon at school,” said Centerville Officer John Davis.
The Centerville Police Department charged two students at Centerville High School after a threat was made on Snapchat on Friday. A 15-year-old girl was charged with making terroristic threats, and a 16-year-old boy was charged with illegal conveyance of a weapon on school grounds. Now officers are looking for people to speak up.
“Don’t let your first reaction be put it on social media and put your twist on it,” Officer Davis said.
“It’s not one of the things anymore where you can say ‘oh it’s just kids being kids,'” said Sherriff Streck.
They said “see something, say something” is key, but who you say it to matters most.
“We need you to say something to someone who can actually do something about it. The simple act of sharing something across social media only makes it that much more difficult for us. If you’re able to, get with a school administrator, a school resource officer, a teacher, or law enforcement,” Davis said.
Sherriff Streck said, “if parents think it’s an immediate threat contact 9-1-1, but it’s important to get a hold of the school because all schools should have a plan in place. Let people who are trained to handle these situations step in and determine if it’s a real threat, if it’s some kind of online prank, or if it’s somebody who upset and just blowing off steam.”