Parents, students glad for quick response after Wasatch High threat
HEBER CITY – Dropping her sophomore daughter off for what was otherwise a typical day at school, Traci Johnson said she noticed a few more police vehicles than normal outside Wasatch High School, Thursday.
“My husband and I felt no threat. She was not worried,” Johnson said, referring to her daughter. “The police presence was very apparent.”
Heber City Police, along with Wasatch County Deputies said they learned of a potentially threatening video post on Snapchat Wednesday. A student discovered it and then reported it to her parents.
“They’d seen a Snapchat of a boy that went to Wasatch High,” Chief Sheriff’s Deputy Jared Rigby explained. “And what they described as an assault rifle, and said in the video, ‘don’t come to school.'”
Rigby said detectives were able to quickly locate the teen and his family.
“He had seen a lot of the media that’s been going around the state and the country in the last week or so,” Rigby said. “He inappropriately thought that it would be funny or comical to do what he did with the weapon.”
Rigby said even though there was never any actual threat to the school, Wasatch County Deputies, and Heber City Police added extra patrols to all of the Wasatch County Schools for both Thursday and Friday.
“In the day and age that we live, the safety of everyone, including students is very serious. We take it serious,” Rigby said.
Parents were notified by email Wednesday night of the threat, arrest, and increased patrols. Joshua Livingstone, 17, a junior said he knew what to expect, but the reality was also somewhat sobering.
“I guess we’re not really the exception,” Livingstone said. “In one or two of my classes, we talked about, ‘OK, if there’s an actually a shooter here, what are we going to do?'”
Johnson is hopeful that other students will learn from one student’s mistake.
“This child is going to have to deal with some severe consequences, because of a stupid joke,” she said.
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