Alleghany County Schools, law enforcement speak out about threat to high school

By Alison Wickline - Reporter

ALLEGHANY COUNTY, Va. - Alleghany County schools and the sheriff's office are revealing new details about a school threat that led to a student's arrest.

"We're not going to tolerate it, we're not going to tolerate threats or actions towards schools so we will take the appropriate consequences," said Eugene Kotulka, superintendent of Alleghany County Schools.

Deputies said on Friday, a student received a threat through a computer app saying there was going to be a shooting at Alleghany County High School Tuesday. The student who received the threat reported it to the school who then alerted the sheriff's office.

"Our hearts go out to Florida and this being on the back of that, parents have worries," said Kotulka.

The student later admitted to making the threat and was arrested. The school believes the threat was made to disrupt class, but now that student faces a felony charge. 

"We take all threats seriously whether it's done as a jest or to disrupt our schools," said Kotulka.

During Monday's press conference, the sheriff, school superintendent and school staff made it clear that safety is a top priority. There will be an increased presence of law enforcement at Alleghany High School Tuesday and at all county schools over the next couple weeks. 

"We want our students to come back on Tuesday. We'll have extra deputies there to make sure it's safe and we'll be out in the building to make sure everything's safe," said Kotulka.

Officers are encouraging parents to keep a close watch on their children and to make sure they know how serious the consequences can be -- a felony charge and time in a juvenile detention center.

The superintendent said if parents still don't feel comfortable sending their kids to the high school Tuesday, it will be counted as an excused absence.

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