Weber School District student arrested for sending ‘clown threats’

The roof-mounted lightbar of an emergency vehicle police car
Photo: Ponds5

WEST HAVEN, Utah, Oct. 6, 2016 (Gephardt Daily) — A 14-year-old Rocky Mountain Junior High School student is finding out that pranks don’t pay. The student was arrested today on four counts of threats of violence for sending “clown threats” to other students at the school in West Haven.

According to a news release from Lt. Nate Hutchinson, public information officer for Weber County Sheriff’s Office, the student created a fake social media Instagram account using the alias of a clown. He then sent several private messages to other students and friends, threatening to shoot and/or stab them.

The student thought it would be funny to capitalize on the attention that clown threats have received recently, the release states. He didn’t let his friends in on the joke, though, and one of them alerted the school’s administration.

The Rocky Mountain Junior High resource officer quickly became involved and was able to determine which student was behind the threats, according to the release. The resource officer spoke with the student, who admitted he was behind the posts and believed it was simply a joke.

Because of the serious nature of the threats and the alarm they caused, the student was arrested and released on a citation for four counts of threats of violence. He will have to answer to the charges in juvenile court, the release states. He was also expelled from school.

Hutchinson wants the public to be aware that no students were in any danger, and the school administration and resource officer were able to resolve the situation quickly.

Hutchinson also made it clear in the release that the sheriff’s office takes all threats seriously, regardless of how they are intended. Anyone involved in making such threats, even as a joke, will be prosecuted.


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