NewsLocal News

Actions

Student in custody following Magna school online threat

Matheson Jr. High School.jpg
Posted at 3:34 PM, Dec 16, 2021

MAGNA, Utah — Officials say a student is in custody in connection to a threat made against Matheson Jr. High School in Magna school Thursday.

WATCH: School threats in Utah part of nationwide trend

Matheson Principal Megan Madsen sent a note to parents saying that even though a suspect was apprehended, there was no credible threat.

"It caused a major disruption to our school day. It caused needless fear in our students and staff members and was very unsettling for our community as a whole," wrote Madsen. "The suspect was taken from the school and transported directly to juvenile detention. In addition to criminal charges including a felony charge of making a terroristic threat, the suspect will also face school and district level discipline."

Madsen added that school officials are concerned with the "overarching social media use among our students," and requested that parents remove social media access from their children.

Local schools, as well as schools across the country, have been dealing with threats that have gone viral on the social media platform TikTok. In the posts, a person claims they are tired of bullying and will shoot up the school on Friday.

On Thursday, a specific threat was made against Matheson using the same language as the viral post, leading to an investigation and stepped up security at the school.

TikTok Threat
Screenshot of online threat that has gone viral on social media

The Tooele County School District discussed the threats in a note to parents and students.

"The original threat is believed to have started as a way for students to skip or be excused from school and has morphed into something much more disturbing," the district wrote.

The frenzy over threats led Granger High School principal David Dunn to send out an alert Wednesday telling parents that no evidence of a threat had been found.

Law enforcement agencies around Utah, like the Springville Police Department, are not letting down their guard.

"Even though the source of the threat was not directed to a school in Springville, the Springville Police Department is taking the threat seriously and will have increased police presence at the schools tomorrow.

A surge in school threats have followed the shooting that left five students dead in Oxford, Michigan earlier this month.