Kelvin Slade was arrested for sending threatening text messages to students that prompted lockdowns at several Alamance County schools.
GRAHAM, NC (WFMY) – A 16-year-old from Burlington was arrested Tuesday for sending threatening text messages directed towards several schools and students in Alamance County.
Kelvin Slade was charged with two counts of False Report of Mass Violence Against Educational Property. Slade was issued four more warrants for the same charge Wednesday along with two counts of Misdemeanor Obstructing Justice for Misleading Investigators.
Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson said Slade was an Eastern Alamance High School student and played on the football team. Slade was revealed as the source of the threats during a Wednesday press conference led by the Sheriff’s Office.
Slade was formally booked Tuesday night and released from Alamance County Detention Center after posting a $10,000 secured bond. He was arrested a second time on additional charges Wednesday and bonded out of the Alamance County Detention Center Wednesday afternoon at 4:30 p.m.
Students who knew him, even in passing, call this arrest shocking.
“He was definitely one of the popular kids,” said Kala Olsen, “He is academically involved and does sports, so that’s why I wasn’t expecting it to come from him.”
Many parents we spoke with had a sense of relief once they heard about the arrest, but they also fear this is far from over.
“There’s a sense of relief definitely, that they’ve apprehended this. Hopefully that will soothe my daughter’s anxiety about coming back to class, but I’m afraid that if it is just an easy slap on the the wrist – I’m afraid that children may get an idea that it is not so bad,” said parent Dreama Caldwell.
“Does it make me feel safe that this particular person has been arrested and hopefully convicted? No. As everyone always says — there are the copycats. Somebody else is going to do it. This is going to keep going on, and on, and on, until something is done,” said Michelle Ayers, who has a daughter at Eastern Alamance High School.
Some, are even thinking about homeschooling their children, instead of sending them to public school.
“I don’t want my child going to school, and me dropping him off at school — and one day — I don’t get to pick him up again,” said Tabitha Jones, who was going to be sending her son to Kindergarten next year.
The messages Slade sent resulted in lockdowns at Eastern and Western Alamance High Schools along with Woodlawn and Western Middle Schools. Slade also made a threat toward the Eastern Alamance prom at the Mebane Arts Center on May 5.
We will go after, vigorously, anyone who does things like this,” Johnson said. “To disrupt our educational system, our schools, endanger our children, all the gloves come off at that point in time.”