JMS safe after threatening message found

Published 3:09 pm Thursday, September 5, 2019

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By JOYANNA LOVE/ Senior Staff Writer

Jemison Middle School was on high alert for part of Sept. 5 after a threat against the school was brought to a School Resource Officer’s attention.

Chilton County Schools Superintendent Jason Griffin said a threat had been written on a bathroom wall.

“Our school resource officers worked with school officials,” Jemison Chief Shane Fulmer said.

Jemison Police SROs investigated the issue and asked for aid from the Chilton County Sheriff’s Office, Fulmer said.

Police dogs were brought to the scene and the threat was determined not to be viable.

No one was in danger.

“Everyone was back to normal in an hour and a half,” Griffin said. “… I would rather err on the side of caution that make a mistake and someone get hurt.”

Officials are still investigating who may have written the note.

Griffin said the school’s code of conduct and consequences for making threats is outlined to students.

“The students need to realize that we take (threats) seriously,” Griffin said. “We will follow the procedure.”

The procedures include taking precautions to keep students safe but also consequences for students who make a threat.

This policy goes into effect regardless of whether the threat is deemed viable or not.

Griffin said the policy lists in school suspension, placement at PASS Academy and expulsion as possibilities. Punishment is determined on a case-by-case basis.

In every case, the school principal makes a recommendation. If the recommendation is for long-term placement at PASS Academy or expulsion, then a hearing is scheduled with the PASS Academy Principal Kevin Boulware.

Griffin said he usually attends these hearings. If Boulware makes a recommendation for expulsion, then it would go to Griffin and finally the Board of Education for approval.