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Girl, 10, charged for threat

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Ward student allegedly posted threat on social media

By BEN CARLSON

A 10-year-old female student at Emma B. Ward Elementary School was charged today for posting a shooting threat on a social media site, Sheriff Joe Milam confirmed.

The child was charged with second-degree terroristic threatening and harrassing communications.

Milam said the child allegedly posted the threat on a social media account last night, outside of school. He said other students saw the post and alerted school staff this afternoon, which prompted an investigation and immediately identified the student.

Milam said the school was never put on lockdown because, unlike other threats made over the past several weeks, the threat was not made inside of the school.

Milam said there was never any threat against students or staff.

Today's arrests marks the seventh time an Anderson County student has been arrested for making threatening statements in recent weeks, including three from threats to “shoot up the schools” made Feb. 20 at the middle and high schools. A fourth arrest involved an 11-year-old student from Emma B. Ward Elementary School.

Two more female students, ages and 12 and 13, were charged yesterday after allegedly making threats that locked down the middle school for nearly the entire day.

In all, six of the seven students arrested have been girls.

Another incident that forced Saffell Street Elementary School to go on a soft lockdown Tuesday was handled by school administrators, Superintendent Sheila Mitchell said.

The local threats prompted some residents to start a petition drive to have metal detectors installed in the schools along with other security measures.

Superintendent Sheila Mitchell said at the time that a local person had volunteered to help raise funds for the metal detectors, but wasn’t sure if the idea would surface at the next school board meeting.