RUPERT — Rupert Police Chief James Wardle said investigators determined a Friday social media threat to a Minidoka County middle school was “not a credible threat to the person or the school.”
“It doesn’t look like it was valid and that it was just someone saying stupid stuff,” Wardle said Sept. 3.
But, he said, officers remain at the school Sept. 3 because any type of social media threat directed at a school or student is still a crime.
An East Minico Middle School girl received the threat on Instagram on Aug. 29, which disrupted school Friday and heightened police protection across the district.
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The district held “an emergency evacuation drill” at the school Friday, sending all students to Minico High School. The students were returned to the middle school later Friday morning.
“We are still chasing the profile down,” Wardle said. Police found 157 profiles that matched the suspect on social media.
According to Idaho law, “any person who willfully threatens by word, electronic means or act to use a firearm or other deadly or dangerous weapon to do violence to any person on school grounds or to disrupt the normal operations of an educational institution by making a threat of violence is guilty of a misdemeanor.”
If the person making the threat has a firearm or other deadly weapon in their possession, it can be charged as a felony.