SOUTH CHARLESTON – The West Virginia State Police (WVSP) responded to two bomb threats at public schools last week.
One of the two bomb threats occurred at a Mingo County High School. Sgt. M. S. Lively with the Williamson detachement of the WVSP headquarters said, “State police in Mingo and Williamson are going to take issues like this very seriously and ensure that individuals responsible for that type of behavior are prosecuted.”
Sgt. Lively continued saying, “We will do our best to ensure the safety of our students in Mingo County.”
In both of these incidents, students left a message stating that a bomb would detonate. Fortunately, both bomb threats were hoaxes. However, Troopers were able to develop probable cause to obtain juvenile petitions against 5 students.
The involved juveniles have been or will be charged with making terroristic threats (WV Code 61-6-24). The penalty for a violation of WV Code 61-6-24 reads as follows: “Any person who knowingly and willfully conveys false information knowing the information to be false concerning an attempt or alleged attempt being made or to be made of a terrorist act is guilty of a felony and, upon conviction thereof, shall be fined not less than $5,000 nor more than $25,000 or confined in a state correctional facility for not less than one year nor more than three years, or both.”
Regardless of the reason someone may give for making a bomb threat, the West Virginia State Police will vigorously pursue justice.
National and international events in recent years show the necessity for taking all threats seriously. Prosecutor’s Offices and County Boards of Education across the state will continue to work with the West Virginia State Police to identify all threats to the safety and well-being of our children. Anyone considering making a bomb threat should realize that the consequences most likely will be severe and have a lasting impact on their life.