Arnold teen admits making up school threat after arrest

ARNOLD, MO - A 16-year-old is now in the custody of the Jefferson County Juvenile Authorities after making a threat to others at Fox Senior High School. Police say he sent electronic messages telling students to call in sick from school on 2/20/2018. Investigators say his messages indicate he was going to bring a gun, or possibly explosives, to school at that date.

Arnold police were notified of the threats. They were able to locate the teen within two hours. They placed him under arrest at his home Thursday at around 4:30pm.

The teen confessed to sending the threatening messages after the arrest. He tells police that he had no intention of actually following through with it. Investigators say he was seeking attention. Police did not find any weapons at his home.

The Arnold Police Department says, " They have been in regular contact with school officials and has increased patrols in the area. We take these threats very serious in today's society, especially in light of the situation that occurred recently in Florida."

The suspect is a student at Fox Senior High School in Arnold, Mo.

This is an email sent to FOX C-6 parents:

Dear Fox C6 Families,

I wanted to take a minute to communicate with each of you about a situation that was investigated and dealt with at Fox High School. On Thursday evening students reported to teachers threats being made by a student. When these reports were brought to the administrators' attention, a thorough investigation was conducted. As part of any investigation in dealing with threats, our local authorities were also notified. The Arnold Police Department took over our investigation and followed through in taking appropriate action, thus eliminating any threat from being at school for today, February 16, 2018. The quick work of our students to communicate with us, and allow us to look into the situation, assisted us in working with the Arnold PD. This is the exact reason we talk with our kids about letting us know anything they hear, no matter how small they might think it is.

Since learning that the threat was taken care of by the Arnold PD, we expected to have a normal day of school at Fox High School; however, that has not been the case. As morning approached, we quickly learned that on social media there were multiple posts regarding the situation that was already under control. Some of these posts linked students to threats and text messages that were not accurate. As the morning progressed, there were even pictures from students in other states that were being posted as Fox High School students. As a Fox C6 Community, please rest assured that we worked hand-in-hand with the Arnold PD the entire time. We would never put our children in harm's way!

I hope each of you know me well enough by now that communication with our families is incredibly important. I did not have Fox High School send out a letter on this situation late last night because the situation was under control and we knew students were completely safe. As we continue to learn and grow as a school district and as a community, which includes the impact of social media, we will have times like this that we face. We will always face them together keeping our students’ safety and best interest in mind. I am incredibly proud of our students and thank our parents and community for your constant support.

Respectfully,

Dr. Jim Wipke

Superintendent