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Friday, April 18, 2014, 8:57 p.m.
 

Credit police and school officials for making an arrest within a week of a teen believed to have made three bomb threats recently at Ford City Junior-Senior High School.

Bomb threats are a conundrum for officials. They have to be taken seriously, even though they most often end up being nothing more than threats.

In truth, bombers — except maybe on police dramas on television — rarely announce their intentions. That would be counterintuitive to their goals. The Boston Marathon bombers didn't leave a note warning of the terror to come. Terrorists want to hurt and kill, not scare. And they don't want to fail. Warning people of impending danger would compromise their objective.

No bombs were found at Ford City or West Shamokin Junior-Senior High School, where another threat recently was made. Empirical evidence suggested there was overwhelming odds that would be the case. But you can't gamble when it comes to the lives of students and faculty after a threat is made. Schools have to be evacuated and searched for a bomb. The school day has to be disrupted.

The arrest of a suspect in Ford City and the penalties she faces should serve notice to others that bomb threats are a serious matter. They are not a harmless way to get out of classes for a day. They are not a good way to get back at school officials for a perceived wrong suffered. The fact is a bomb threat is a felony.

We thank police and school officials for their speedy actions to bring this fact to the forefront.

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