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Text messaging used to spread threats of school violence

Text messaging used to spread threats of school violence



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Randall Jeppesen reportingSchools across the country are facing a new problem: students who send out mass text messages about threats of violence.

From Tennessee to California, schools have been seeing large numbers of absent students because someone sent out a text saying a bomb would go off or a shooter was going to appear at school. The word then spread from cell phone to cell phone.

Provo School District spokesperson Greg Hudnall says, "We had an incident at a middle school where some derogatory things were said and spread around, but nothing like, 'There's going to be a bomb or a shooter on campus,' or anything that way."

He says if a student does start a threat rumor, the district will track the text down with police, and charges will be filed.

"It's no different than pulling the fire alarm," he says.

Hudnall says any threats are taken very seriously, and punishment for causing a panic will be serious, as well.

E-mail: rjeppesen@ksl.com

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