Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

Arrest made in school threat

jeremysmithA 17-year-old Lakeside High School student charged with making terroristic threats at school late last week is still at Bayou Dorcheat Correctional Center. His bond is set at $15,000.

Webster Parish Sheriff Gary Sexton said Jeremy Smith admitted he wrote on the bathroom wall a message threatening to kill everyone but told officials he intended it as a joke. He was allegedly supposed to carry out the threat Monday.

"We had Smith write something for us, and our investigators made a comparison," Sexton said. "There were some similarities."

Sexton said there was another student in the bathroom with Smith at the same time the message was written, but he was not arrested.

"It appears to be an isolated incident involving just one person," Sexton said.

A second charge of pornography involving juveniles was added when, during the investigation, Smith told detectives there were some videos of an underage female on his cell phone and the same underage juvenile is in residence at his parents' home, sharing his bedroom.

His parents, John and Gail Smith have been issued a summons to appear in court and are charged with improper supervision of a minor.

"The 16-year-old minor was turned back over to family members," Sexton said.

Charlotte Dean, Middle School Supervisor for Webster Parish Schools said parents and guardians of Lakeside students were informed Friday evening by a recorded phone message.

In the alert school officials said, "We certainly do not want to alarm you, but we wanted to let you know of the situation and the steps we have taken. The board will ask law enforcement to vigorously prosecute those persons responsible."

Dean said law enforcement was contacted and preventative measures were planned after the threat was found Thursday afternoon.

Additional security and law enforcement officers were on campus Friday and were to be on the campus today as well.

"We take threats to the safety of our students very seriously," Dean said. "Our students, your children, are our most precious assets. We want our parents to know we are working with law enforcement as we navigate this issue through to a safe conclusion.

Sheriff's deputies are scheduled to be at the school today to ensure the students' safety.

"We are planning to increase security for a while," Sexton said. "I have my school resource officer, deputy (Wade) Wells and a few extras down there today ... just in case. But we don't expect anything to happen."

Jeri Bloxom contributed to this report.






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