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Local school districts continue to respond to rash of threats

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Published: Dec. 10, 2021 at 7:55 AM EST
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EVANS, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - At the end of a week of high tensions at local schools, we’re learning about more threats that put school administrators on alert.

Among them, parents of Evans High School and the A.R. Johnson Health Science & Engineering Magnet School students got messages about threats that surfaced.

Previously, threats from Burke County High School, Hephzibah High School, Cross Creek High School, the John S. Davidson Fine Arts School and Aiken High School have had school districts, local, state and federal partners working to keep our communities safe.

Here’s a look at some of the latest incidents:

In Columbia County

“Evans High School administration was alerted to a threatening social media post made after school hours, Thursday. December 9,” parents of students at Evans High School were told in a message. “The Columbia County Sheriff’s Department was immediately contacted and is currently investigating. School operations will continue as normal, however, law enforcement will be available out of an abundance of caution.”

The message goes on to state that the safety of students and staff is a top priority.

“All responsible parties will be held accountable by law enforcement and the student code of conduct,” the message states.

Any information or suspicious activity can be reported to school administration or by contacting the anonymous tip hotline at 706-541-3600.

“Parents, please continue to speak to your children about the appropriate use of social media and the ramifications that its improper use can cause,” said the message from Principal Michael R. Johnson.

In Richmond County

Meanwhile, parents of students at A.R. Johnson Health Science & Engineering Magnet School also received a message about a threat.

“In an effort to keep you informed, please be aware of a threat made against the school that was found in a restroom today,” Thursday’s message stated. “The threat is being investigated by Richmond County School System School Safety and Security. We take threats seriously and work to resolve them quickly.”

The message states that out of an abundance of caution, an additional school resource officer would be on campus Friday.

“Please take this opportunity to speak to your student about the importance of school safety and the appropriateness of their actions. Encourage them to report concerning activity to a teacher or administrator.,” stated the message from Principal Dr. Emily Driggers.

Parents were urged to remind their children of the Richmond County school system tip line, 706-828-1077, which is always available to receive and address their concerns about safety of our school, students and staff.

On Monday, parents of students at the Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School got a similar message stating that a threat against the school that was found in a restroom shortly before dismissal Dec. 3. The threat was investigated and an additional school resource officer was on the school campus Monday.

Elsewhere

Some pepper spray was discharged Wednesday in a classroom a North Augusta High School, according to officials. The pepper spray was brought to school by a student after there rumors of violence at the school earlier in the week. It was discharged in a classroom by another student.

The rumors on Tuesday were the same ones circulating the day before at Aiken High School and stemming from a post the district said was circulating on social media outlets and particularly among students. The district said in a message to parents that the post was “thoroughly investigated by local law enforcement” and “deemed not credible.”

The district said it took precautionary steps, such as boosting the law enforcement presence, raising hallway supervision and additional communications. Administrators said these steps were taken out of “an abundance of caution.”

A parent told News 12 that the rumors have not entirely subsided.

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