HENDERSON COUNTY, N.C. (WLOS) — A teen charged with making threats to Rugby Middle School in Henderson County made his first court appearance Monday.
The suspect, a high school student, is not being named because he is younger than 18.
The Henderson County Sheriff’s office was alerted about the threat Sunday morning.
Additional officers were at Rugby Middle School on Monday, but the school was in session.
“We take all threats very, very seriously,” Maj. Frank Stout, with the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office, said.
According to the sheriff’s office, the suspect is the son of a deputy. Officials said the threats were made to specific students at the school via Instagram Direct message.
“He is in custody and will remain in custody,” Stout said of the teen.
This is not the teenager’s first brush with law enforcement. He was charged in February 2017 for having a knife at school. District Attorney Greg Newman said the teen was charged by the school resource officer at West Henderson High School. The teen pleaded guilty in April. He didn’t have any additional charges for the next three months, and the charge was dismissed in July.
“This is customary in these cases, when the object is something other than a gun and nothing indicates use in a threatening way,” Newman said.
This weekend’s threat comes after recent school shootings nationally and as the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office is already considering ways to increase security at schools.
“You can’t put a price on the safety of our children, ever, so we’re trying to bring safety, security and calm to our community,” Stout said.