Threats against school lead to arrest

15 year old boy threatened to 'shoot up' school

March 02, 2016 - by Lt. Bob Vander Yacht

Bellingham, WA

A 15 year old student at Bellingham High School was arrested and booked into Whatcom County Juvenile Detention late Monday night for Harassment stemming from statements that he had made about plans to commit a school shooting. The Principal contacted the Bellingham Police Department when he became aware of the threats.

The Principal learned that students had been approached by the boy who said something similar to 'don't come to school tomorrow, I am going to shoot the place up'.

The threats made by the 15 year old created a fear that he would follow through and harm students. This is a key component of the Harassment statute (RCW 9A.46.020).

In light of recent school and workplace violence incidents it is critical that all situations of this nature be swiftly and fully investigated. Our Officers and Detectives worked deep into the night interviewing witnesses, the arrestee and their respective families. Through this process we have learned that the involved boy's interest in school attacks has been increasing over the last few weeks.

A search warrant was obtained for the home of the arrestee. No weapon/s were located during this search.

We are impressed with the level of trust and communication displayed at Bellingham High School. It is great to see that an environment exists where people step forward to report their concerns.

Media Contact

​Bob Vander Yacht, PIO
Bellingham Police Department

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