Students behind Grand Blanc shooting hoax will be disciplined
By Andrew Keller, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
GRAND BLANC, MI (WNEM) -
A prank that spiraled into chaos may cost some local students.
Grand Blanc High School is ready to show those students why the joke is no laughing matter and charges could be in their future.
Grand Blanc students are back on campus after winter break and Wednesday night, boys basketball took on Carmen-Ainsworth. But this was a far cry from the scene just a couple weeks ago. On Dec. 19, parent Dennis Skinner remembers the terrifying text message he got from his son.
"The first text was 'we're locked down in the lunchroom and there has been shots fired,'" Skinner explained.
Now, of course there never were shots fired, but the scare for the students and teachers started because of fake messages sent by two sophomore students to their parents. The hoax had parents believing the school was under attack and word spread like wildfire.
"They should pay, because that put a lot of parents on edge," said Skinner of the students who started the prank.
And TV5 learned there will be consequences. Superintendent Norman Abdella says that type of behavior will not be tolerated. He plans to recommend to the school board that at least one of the students involved be expelled. He's also considering the same punishment for one other student. A few students, not directly involved, will be suspended.
"It caused a lot of commotion and it caused a lot of harm," said Abdella.
At least two students could also face criminal charges. Some parents at the basketball game said rightfully so.
"I don't think stuff like that should be taken lightly. You have to send a message that stuff like that will not be tolerated," said Terry Crawford, a parent.
Other parents say they're just kids and they made a horrible mistake.
"I don't know if they just didn't realize what they were causing you know, but it's just, it's really sad," said Shawn Edwards, a parent.
Grand Blanc Police Chief Steven Solomon told TV5 he believes these two children should be charged because of all of the manpower and big-time concerns the pranks led to. His department's report will be turned over to the prosecutor this week.
In related news, charges have already been filed against two teens in Millington, one is facing charges of terrorism. The charges comes after administrators say one of the students threatened to shoot up the school last month. Both teens are being held in a juvenile detention center without bond.
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