Three Palatine High School students and a former student, are facing charges following their alleged threats made on social media March 4, 2018 that spread fears of a mass shooting at Palatine High School. Although school remained open Monday March 5, 2018, about half of Palatine High School students stayed out of school on March 5, 2018 as a precaution. By the end of the school day, only about 30 percent of students were in class.
The teen suspects, ranging between 14 to 17 years old, were identified as being involved in “the deliberate dissemination of false information which made others believe there would be a shooting at Palatine High School,” police said Wednesday. The teen suspects were not named because of their ages.
Charges of disorderly conduct and obstructing a police investigation followed an investigation into rumors that surfaced March 4, 2018, indicating a former Palatine High student planned a mass shooting on campus the next day. At 11:45 p.m. Sunday, March 4, 2018 Palatine High School and District 211 officials addressed the possible threat with an alert.
PHS Alert SUN 03.04.2018 11:45 PM
“The administration of Palatine High School and the Palatine Police have received several messages and inquiries describing concerns associated with a student who previously attended Palatine High School. The claims being spread on social media reference unfounded rumors that a student intends to use guns and cause harm at Palatine High School.
We continue to monitor all possible concerns and, presently, we do not have any information to suggest any student is a threat to the school. We will continue to work closely with the Palatine Police Department surrounding any matter of potential concern. In order to provide assurance to all attending school on Monday, March 5, extra police officers will be visible on the Palatine High School campus.”
Palatine police said the rumors suggesting a possible threat were spread through a series of text messages and social media posts.
Palatine police say investigators were able to determine where the false information originated. The investigation involved searching multiple homes, conducting a significant number of formal interviews and in-depth evaluations of social media and cellular phone accounts.
All four teens were released to the custody of their parents, according to Palatine police Cmdr. Craig Lesselyoung.
The teen suspects’ cases will be heard Cook County juvenile court, police said. As is the case with high schools involved with student disciplinary actions, Palatine-Schaumburg High School District 211, the district will not release information regarding disciplinary proceedings against the students.
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