SEARSPORT, Maine — One week after the horrific school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, a student at Searsport District Middle School was accused of pulling a fire alarm and making a series of threats that shook school officials and led to criminal charges being levied against him.
The student, whose name has not been released, was charged with terrorizing and false public alarm after the May 31 incident.
It’s at least the second time that Waldo County school districts have reacted to threats since the Texas shooting of 19 children and two teachers caused communities around the country to go on high alert. Last week, classes at Samuel L. Wagner Middle School in Searsport were canceled for a day after a threatening message was written on the wall of the boys’ bathroom.
In Searsport, School Resource Officer Colby Leavitt of the Searsport Police Department responded to the May 31 report of a fire alarm at the middle school. He was told by the principal that the student, a boy, had pulled the alarm.
Leavitt also heard that the student had said some alarming things that day.
“‘I will bring a flip knife and I will stab someone. I will commit murder,’” the student allegedly told a teacher, Leavitt wrote in his police report. “If I can’t commit murder I’ll commit arson. Heck, I’ll even commit a school shooting like that Texas one.’”
The student had a thumb tack in his pocket that he had also been threatening to use to stab someone, Leavitt wrote. Although the boy initially refused to give the tack to the officer, eventually he let Leavitt take it from him.
Officials decided to have the student taken to Waldo County General Hospital for a mental health crisis evaluation, but it was not immediately clear what the result of it was.
The boy’s initial court date is set for Thursday, July 21. He will not be allowed to return to school for the rest of the academic year, Leavitt said.
“It’s a scary time for anybody. Anytime a threat like this happens, we have to take it seriously,” he said. “I think it was caught before anything could really happen.”
Editor’s note: A previous version of this story contained information that has been retracted.