LOGAN COUNTY, Okla. – Lawman now know who was behind a threat that caused a school district to be shutdown.
Chief Deputy Rich Stephens showed a picture a the threat. It’s a hit list written by an angry student on a bathroom wall. It reads: “Tomorrow I will kill..” then lists the names of six students and the principal. It also states “I have a gun and I’m tried of this.”
Coyle Schools were placed on lock down moments after the threat was discovered. The day the shooting was planned Logan County deputies and k-9 units were on campus ready to stop it.
“We screened every single student that came in the building with a magnetic wand to see if they had any metal on their bodies and we searched every single bag, and purse looking for weapons,” said Stephens.
Julia Lopez’s brother’s name was on the kill list. “It kind of made other families scared but we didn’t really react to it like other people did.”
Nothing was found.
Over the next three days students were allowed to stay home if they chose until authorities believed the threat was over.
“We did a good job of notifying people, reacting quickly. I though the process went really well,” said Superintendent Josh Sumrall.
Many students agree. “It was kind of scary but we knew we were safe,” said sophomore Shelby Jennings.
The investigation then focused on which student or staff member penned the threat. The sheriff’s office has a secret weapon most agencies don’t have…..a forensic document examiner.
Stephens said, “He was able to collect hand writing examples from all the student body and had the arduous task of comparing them. He was able to identify one student as being consistent with the hand writing that was on the wall.”
The analyst studied all 300 hundred samples using magnification equipment and high-resolution photography. He was able to trace the curves of every letter, determine the pressure used and the angels at which the letters were formed. His expertise lead him to a 15-year-old boy.
“He stated in his confession that he had been disciplined in the classroom and removed from the classroom and was angry about that and wanted to act out in a way that would cause commotion,” Stephens said.
That student is facing a charge for a terrorism hoax. Superintendent Sumrall said he was also suspended for the rest of this semester and the next; which is the longest state law allows.