Lafourche Parish Schools Superintendent Dr. Jo Ann Matthews announced a South Lafourche High School student has been charged with Terrorizing after an investigation revealed the student allegedly planned to bring a gun to school to kill a teacher.
He and two students at other schools have also been suspended pending expulsion hearings following investigations. These were results of some of the investigations conducted at Lafourche Parish schools after multiple allegations and rumors surfaced on Wednesday, February 21.
Based on these investigations, detectives have found there to be no active credible threat at any school at this time. Additionally, no firearms have been found on any school campus since the onset of these recent investigations.
The 15-year-old male student at South Lafourche High School was questioned by detectives Wednesday after other students came forward about his alleged plan to kill a teacher. Through investigation, detectives found probable cause to charge the juvenile with Terrorizing. He was initially sent to a hospital for a mental evaluation and was subsequently released back into detectives’ custody and was placed at the Lafourche Parish Juvenile Justice Facility in Thibodaux.
Additionally, detectives investigated reports that an eight-year-old male student at Lockport Lower Elementary School told other students about plans to bring a gun to school. Investigators found the student did not have access to any firearms. Due to the student’s age, the child was referred to the Louisiana Supreme Court’s Families in Need of Services Assistance Program and released to the custody of his parents.
Parents of Larose-Cut Off Middle School students were informed via a letter that a student made a statement about bringing a weapon to school. Detectives conducted an investigation and found the 12-year-old male student was not in possession of any weapons nor did he have access to any weapons.
Due to his statement and additional evidence, he is currently undergoing a mental health evaluation at a hospital. No charges have been filed at this time, but the investigation is continuing.
All three aforementioned juveniles have been suspended from their respective schools pending expulsion hearings. Due to their ages, none of their identities can be released.
Detectives investigated several other allegations and threats at various Lafourche Parish schools throughout the day and night on Wednesday. Each was investigated and determined to be untrue or that there was no active credible threat involved.
Sheriff Webre strongly urges the public to never spread rumors, especially rumors of this nature.
“People believe they are helping by telling others what they have heard,” said Sheriff Webre. “In reality, spreading unverified information from unofficial sources does not help anyone and can easily create unnecessary panic. If you hear any rumor about a threat, contact the school or our office. We will properly investigate and, if necessary, pass on any credible threats or information to the public.”
Sheriff Webre also added that additional deputies have been assigned to schools due to the recent number of threats.
“Students and parents should not be alarmed at our increased presence at schools,” said Sheriff Webre. “We are simply there to enhance the safety of everyone there.”
These allegations and rumors surfaced Wednesday following reports from the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office that two 17-year-old male students from Thibodaux High School are facing charges of Terrorizing in reference to a plan to carry out a shooting at the school.
Detectives have obtained warrants and both students will be arrested and booked into the Lafourche Parish Detention Center on charges following their respective mental health evaluations.
The bond for the charge of Terrorizing will be set at $1 million each. One of the two students will also be charged with Simple Assault, which will carry an additional $10,000 bond. If convicted of the charge of Terrorizing, they could each face up to 15 years in prison.
Posted on Thu, February 22, 2018
by The Lafourche Gazette