Two seventh-grade students from Aberdeen Middle School were charged with making a bomb threat to their school over winter break, Aberdeen Police said Thursday.
The two girls were referred to Juvenile Services on Wednesday, the day classes resumed, on charges of threats of mass violence and disturbing school operations.
The two students collaborated last Friday to send an anonymous bomb threat using the social media app LIPSI, according to Lt. Will Reiber of the Aberdeen Police Department.
LIPSI is a social media site that allows some level of anonymity, Reiber said.
The message was sent to various students who attend the middle school. A student and a parent of another student who received the threat contacted the school resource officer about the threat, he said.
“It’s a great asset when your SRO is very involved in the school and has a great relationship” that parents and students notify him of a threat, Reiber said.
Aberdeen Middle School’s SRO is Officer Jason Neidig. He began investigating the threat and spoke to several students and their parents, according to Reiber.
It was determined that one of the students who claimed to have received the threat was the student who composed the text message, he said. The threat was made for the first day the students returned from break.
While police were investigating the threat, they found a window open at the school, which required them to bring in explosive-detecting dogs, Reiber said.
Numerous public safety resources were deployed during the investigation including the use of the Maryland State Police explosive detection dogs and resources from other allied law enforcement who responded to assist,” Reiber said in a news release. “The Aberdeen Police Department takes any threat to public safety seriously and thoroughly investigates each threat to ensure public safety. Every hoax bomb threat investigated diverts valuable public safety resources away from performing their normal functions.”
Police want parents to educate their children about the seriousness of making hoax bomb threats and the consequences.