Traverse City News and Events

At Least Five Threats Made Against Schools In GT County, Says Prosecutor

By Beth Milligan | Dec. 6, 2021

At least five threats have been made against school students and staff in Grand Traverse County in the wake of the Oxford High School shooting, according to Grand Traverse County Prosecuting Attorney Noelle Moeggenberg. Moeggenberg said in a release Monday that while it didn't appear any of the local threats were intended to be carried out, false threats are still investigated by law enforcement and are punishable by up to 20 years in jail.

Moeggenberg noted that school districts across Michigan have been dealing with copycat threats after the Oxford High School shooting on November 30, in which four students were killed and seven people injured. At least five of those copycat threats were made in Grand Traverse County. Moeggenberg said those cases are "being thoroughly investigated by local law enforcement" and that reports are being forwarded to her office for review. 

"At this time, it appears that none of the individuals being investigated had the intent or the means to carry out the threats," Moeggenberg said. "The motives behind the threats remain unclear, but seem to include peer pressure and a desire to intimidate fellow students with whom the individuals do not get along. School personnel, parents, and students should know that law enforcement is and will take each and every complaint seriously. The prosecutor's office will do the same. False threats of this nature can be punishable by up to 20 years, and people will be held accountable."

Moeggenber called the Oxford High School shooting "absolutely horrific," adding that individuals making copycat threats "need to think about what they are doing to their teachers, parents, and fellow students." She added: "No one should be afraid to go to school, and no parent should have to worry about the safety of their child at school."

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