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Hempfield Area middle school student in custody for alleged threat against classmate

Jamie Martines
| Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018, 3:09 p.m.

A student at Wendover Middle School in the Hempfield Area School District was taken into custody Tuesday for verbally threatening another student, according to Superintendent Tammy Wolicki.

The threat was made on Monday. School officials, school police officers and state police investigated once the threat was reported Tuesday.

Though Wolicki could not comment on the student's status, she said the situation has been addressed.

“I think it's important that everyone know that we take all reports seriously, and certainly we encourage students to continue to report concerns of this nature as soon as possible,” Wolicki said.

There are no plans for additional security at Hempfield Area schools, Wolicki said. Hempfield Area has seven school police officers on staff and always has at least three on duty during school hours, she said.

School counselors are available to talk with students. If support is needed outside of school hours, Hempfield Area students and parents can call the Safe School Hotline to report a concern or information to administrators: 1-800-418-6423, ext. 359 or online at http://www.safeschoolhelpline.com.

Wolicki outlined additional resources in a letter to parents posted to the district website Tuesday afternoon.

State police could not be reached for comment Tuesday.

Hempfield Area is not the only local district to face threats or rumors of threats since a former student killed 17 people in a shooting spree Feb. 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

A 14-year-old boy is being charged with terroristic threats for making machine gun noises and threatening to take a gun to Greensburg Salem Middle School on Monday, according to Greensburg Police Capt. Robert Stafford.

A Snapchat message shut down Franklin Regional School District Friday after a student sent a threatening photo, and state police are investigating a threatening Snapchat message allegedly sent by a Somerset County male juvenile on Friday.

Jamie Martines is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at jmartines@tribweb.com, 724-850-2867 or on Twitter @Jamie_Martines.

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