CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga.,None - Deputies say two 16-year-old students caused chaos when they phoned in a bomb threat from class and now parents are questioning why students were misled about the threat.
The threat happened about 9:30 a.m. Friday at Charles Drew High School in Clayton County. Students told Channel 2’s Tom Jones they immediately noticed police, K-9 units and bomb techs surrounding the school on Garden Walk.
"It was a drill they told us,” senior Claudia Rosales said. "Three hours passed. We were like, I think it’s more than just a drill."
"I never thought about a bomb threat," sophomore Maria Rosales said.
Clayton County Sheriff's deputies told Jones someone called 911 and said, "There's a bomb threat at Charles Drew High School.”
Deputies placed the campus on lockdown but did not evacuate students.
"Why didn't you guys evacuate?" Jones asked Sgt. Dwayne Harrison.
"It's not a normal plan to evacuate because of the nature of the threat," Harrison responded.
Deputies said there could have been a secondary threat outside so they kept everyone inside. Once officers found no dangerous devices they checked 911 records and identified the number that dialed in the threat. Authorities said it belonged to the parent of a Drew High School student.
Officers later traced the call to a student and friend who dialed in the threat from class. Harrison said they dialed from a cellphone that had the service turned off but was still able to dial 911. The 16-year-old students are charged with making terroristic threats and disrupting a public school. The two teens will be tried in juvenile court.
Students told Jones they couldn’t understand such a disruptive prank.
“It’s their fault,” student Maria Rosales said. “They should be mature enough to know what's wrong from right.”
"You do something like this, even though it’s a prank or looked at as a joke, we're going to act accordingly," Harrison said.
Some parents weren't too happy the students were told it was a drill.
"They should have told them the truth so parents could have come and got their kids," Onesia Clemons said.
But other parents told Jones they did not have a problem with the decision.
"I could understand them telling them that it was a drill so they don't get nervous, so that they don't get scared," Daphne Johnson said.
The school district told Jones it reacted in a responsible manner and in the usual protocol for this type of threat.