|Trinity Standard - Local News
Stories Added - April 2010
Copyright 2010 - Polk County Publishing Company
Schools receive 2 bomb threats
Trinity Standard -
TRINITY – A pair of bomb threats made against Trinity schools forced the evacuation of students at Trinity High School and Lansberry Elementary. The first threat came Wednesday, April 21, at the high school and a second was received Monday, April 26, at the elementary. Both were made using notes left in boys’ restrooms at the two schools. Trinity Police Chief Steven Jones said the first threat came the day after a Trinity County jury in Groveton found a juvenile not guilty on charges stemming from a 2008 bomb threat. The juvenile was one of two high school students charged in connection with a Sept. 29, 2008 threat made against THS. The other juvenile had previously entered a guilty plea and was placed on probation. Jones said police were notified at about 11:45 a.m. on April 21 that a note stating “A bomb will blow at 1:30. 4-21-2010”had been found in the boys restroom located near the cafeteria. The building was evacuated with all students being moved to the bleachers in the football stadium which officials searched the school for explosives. A dog with the Conroe Independent School District’s bomb detection unit was brought to the school to assist with the search. No bomb was found and students were allowed to return to the building shortly after 1:45 p.m. The second bomb hoax was received about 11 a.m. Monday when a note was found in the boy’s restroom in the third and fourth grade classroom area. This note stated: “Bome for 2:30 p.m. It is going. You wasting time. Tell someone.” Jones said the building was evacuated and the bomb dog from Conroe came back to Trinity to help search the campus. Again, no explosive device was found. School officials noted that the first grade was away from the campus that day on a field trip and other students were moved to the nearby Trinity Intermediate School where they were served lunch. Many of the children, especially thoise in the lower grades, did not realize there was a problem. They were able to return to the building by about 1 p.m., the police chief said. “Even though we think these threats are hoaxes from the beginning, we have to treat each one as if it was real in order to insure the safety of the students,” Jones said. Jones said he has been told that after the April 21 threat at THS a number of parents became upset because their children were questioned by police before parents were notified. “Normally, as a courtesy, we will notify parents before we question their children but that is not something that is required. We were in an emergency situation and we needed to talk to students who were potential witnesses, so we did not have time to contact parents,” he said. He noted that it was through those student interviews that investigators were able to eliminate some students as suspects. While no one has been taken into custody for either bomb threat, Jones said investigators believe students were involved and added they do have suspects for both threats. He indicated that a student could be taken into custody this week in connection with the high school threat and that forensic evidence in connection with the elementary threat has been forwarded to the Texas Department of Public Safety lab in Austin. “Once we get the results back from Austin, I feel sure that we will be able to positively identify a suspect (for the elementary bomb threat),” he said. Jones noted that making a bomb threat against a school is classified as a state jail felony that is punishable with up to two years in jail. “Parents need to talk to their children about this kind of behavior. Just because those making these threats may be juveniles, does not mean they cannot be prosecuted,” he said. He noted that under Texas law, children as young as 10 years old can be certified to stand trial if they meet certain conditions. “If any parent is concerned with the way these investigations were handled or if they have questions, I urge them to contact me at the police department, 594-2505. I will gladly sit down with them and try to resolve any issue,” the police chief said.