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14-year-olds suspected of social media threat toward Weston Elementary

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Posted at 7:25 AM, Jul 20, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-20 07:37:38-04

GREENFIELD — Two 14-year-olds are under investigation, and one was arrested, on suspicion of making threats targeted toward Weston Elementary School, police and school officials say.

Greenfield police were notified by the FBI of the threat after it was posted Monday. In a news release, Greenfield police did not divulge specifics but said the threat was "very specific in nature".

Police say they were able to quickly identify the two teenagers and bring them in for questioning.

The teen who was arrested is facing possible criminal charges in connection with the threat, according to police.

The case remains under investigation.

"Regardless of the outcome, this incident serves as a reminder to parents to know what your children are doing online and who they are communicating with. Any post made to a social media platform can be quickly captured, saved and reposted," police said in the release.

"We continue to work with Greenfield-Central Schools to ensure the safety and security of all of our community schools. Policies and procedures are in place for incidents like this one. School Resource Officers will continue to be in the schools daily. The Greenfield Police Department and the Greenfield-Central Community School Corporation take all threats to the safety and security of staff and students very seriously. While safety measures and plans are not fully shared with the public for security reasons, be assured they are in place and being followed in this incident," the release states.

A letter to families and staff members from Grenfield-Central Community School Corporation Superintendent Harold Olin and Weston Elementary School Principal Meg Welch states that the district will replace its latest anonymous reporting system with an online reporting app called "STOPit."

Anyone who uses the app can make an anonymous report to school officials and law enforcement. It will be implemented the first day of the 2022-2023 school year.

"We understand that threats regarding school safety are concerning to our families, staff, and community. Greenfield-Central Schools continues to work in partnership with Greenfield Police Department and the Hancock County Sheriff's Department to monitor and respond to threats of this nature. We will continue to remain vigilant and to follow the procedures in our safety plan to ensure the safety of our students and staff," the letter states.

It continues, "In Greenfield-Central, we take all threats seriously, and we know our community does too. The safety of our schools is the responsibility of our staff, our students, our families, and our greater community. If at any time you see or hear something concerning school safety, please reach out to the building principal or any community law enforcement agent. If you see something on social media of a threatening nature, please don't like, share or repost the material. Please contact any law enforcement agency as soon as possible or call 911,"