Shooting threats made at school

Police are investigating two drawings found at Franklin Community High School this week that threatened a school shooting.

Both threats included a drawing of a gun with the words “shoot up the school” and were found in a boys restroom stall at the high school, Principal Leah Wooldridge said.

The first threat was found Monday, and police launched an investigation. The second threat was found Wednesday, and police were called again. Parents were notified by email Wednesday.

A student saw the first drawing during the school day Monday and reported it to administrators, the principal said. The Franklin Police Department was called, and investigators took photos of the drawing and began an investigation, Wooldridge said.

Officers also looked at video surveillance footage from security cameras to see if they could pinpoint who drew the images, Superintendent David Clendening said.

The same drawing and words were found in a different restroom Wednesday, Wooldridge said. Police were called to the high school again that afternoon to take new photos and check the security camera footage.

No lockdowns were implemented on either day, Wooldridge said.

“The police verified that there’s no imminent danger,” she said.

An investigation that includes studying video surveillance and comparing the drawings and handwriting is underway, and extra police officers will be at the 1,600-student school the rest of the week, Wooldridge said. Nothing indicating a date or time for a threatened school shooting was found in either drawing, she said. She said the threats are not credible enough to close the school.

Parents can keep their children home without consequence if they choose, but the school is safe, Wooldridge said.

Parents were notified by 4 p.m. Wednesday. The school did not notify students, parents or the public Monday or Tuesday because the drawing was found late in the day Monday and administrators and police were conducting their investigation, Wooldridge said. In the letter, Wooldridge assures parents that students will be safe at school and asks them to alert administrators if they or their child has any information regarding the person who drew the images.

Since the investigation is underway, details about why the drawings are not credible cannot be released, Franklin Police Chief Tim O’Sullivan said.

Officers are comparing the two drawings and handwriting and are narrowing the timeline for when a person could have written on the restroom stall, Wooldridge said.

Officers told school administrators to check the restrooms on a regular basis and check the hallways regularly during school today and Friday, Wooldridge said. Additional officers will be present at the high school today and Friday, she said.

Wooldridge said she is confident that the drawings were written by a student. Once officers determine who wrote the messages, that person will be disciplined to the fullest extent, she said.

The person also could be arrested for criminal mischief, O’Sullivan said.