Crime

Another Coast student is in custody after making ‘viable’ threats at school, cops say

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The Pearl River County School District posted on its Facebook page Tuesday evening that a student was taken into custody after making threats at school.

The school district stated campus police and the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department had investigated multiple potential threats over the past couple of days.

“One of the reported verbal threats was deemed a viable threat and has led to the arrest of a high school student who is in custody,” the post said, adding the student will be disciplined to the fullest extent of the law.

Pearl River County Chief Deputy Shane Tucker said the arrested student is 17 and was arrested about 10 a.m. on a misdemeanor charge.

“He made multiple threats at different times and days. Students reported that to school officials and we worked along with the school police and administration,” Tucker said. “Our investigation determined the threat was a viable threat against the students and the school so we acted immediately and took him into custody.”

In reply to a comment on their Facebook page, the district said today’s arrest has no connection to a previous threat that was reported at the middle school.

Gulfport Police Chief Leonard Papania addresses the lockdown at North Gulfport Middle School on Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018, after students reported hearing gunshots. Papania praised students for being cautious and taking the necessary course of actio

The arrest is the latest in a long string of incidents across the Coast in the wake of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

As of last Friday, 15 threats had been investigated with 10 of the Coast’s 16 public school districts calling law enforcement officers. At that point, nine Coast students had been arrested in connection to alleged threats.

Patrick Ochs: 228-896-2321, @PatrickOchs

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