15-year-old Pender Co. student charged for making 'non-credible' threat causing hundreds to leave school

15-year-old Pender Co. student charged for making 'non-credible' threat causing hundreds to leave school
WECT's Bill Murray will be in the Digital Studio at 11 a.m. to share the latest information on the lockdowns at several Pender County Schools this morning. (Source: Pender Co. Schools)

PENDER COUNTY, NC (WECT) - A 15-year-old Heidi Trask High School student has been charged with making a false report about mass violence on school property.

The student was the first to post a Snapchat threat that circulated Tuesday morning throughout many schools in Pender County.

Hundreds of students across Pender County decided to leave school after authorities received word about the possible threat made on social media against the county school system.

According to Cpt. Rowell with the Pender County Sheriff's Office, county authorities were tipped off around 7 a.m. Tuesday by a concerned parent about a Snapchat post warning of a possible shooting in "Pender County Schools."

Authorities investigated the threat and sent a message to parents around 9 a.m. saying the threat was not credible.

However, approximately 300 students decided to leave their respective campuses due to the alleged threat.

Statistics provided by the US Department of Education says there were 9,191 students in Pender County schools during the 2015-2016 school year. Tuesday's incident means roughly 3.26% of the county's students were not in attendance.

"We would like to ask that parents continue to speak with their children regarding these types of incidents and encourage students to bring information forward when they hear or find out information," Rowell explained. "Please ask your students to notify a parent, school official or local law enforcement official."

"We work to provide a safe, secure environment where students can learn without having to be worried about their safety. It takes involvement from everyone in the community to make this happen."

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