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Arrests made after District 55 students made threats

The Laurens County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Laurens District High School Student Wednesday after he allegedly made a threat concerning the school on social media.

Mikal Aaron Culbertson, 17, remained in the Johnson Detention Center Thursday after being charged with disturbing schools because those comments were perceived as a threat and “caused fear throughout the school.”

In another incident involving a juvenile, a student made comments on social media that were perceived as a threat. The comments were brought to the attention of the school’s staff, which notified the LCSO and School Resource Officers. That student was charged with making a bomb threat.

In a release, the LCSO said the two incidents are believed to be unrelated.

Laurens County District 55 Spokesman Ed Murray said the two students have been disciplined in accordance with district policy.

The incidents came in the wake of a mass shooting in at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., in which 17 people, including students, teachers and staff, were killed by a lone gunman.

“The environment created in the aftermath of the Florida school shooting has led students across the country to take extreme action,” Laurens District 55 Superintendent Dr. Stephen Peters said in a release from District 55. “Whether it is copycat threats or student protests, every school is dealing with the emotional nature of the current situation. Laurens County School District 55 is not immune to these student behaviors. Both district and school administrators, in cooperation with law enforcement when or if necessary, are being proactive in addressing any issue that may arise. Our paramount concern is student/staff safety and campus security.

“We are certainly in a heightened state of awareness but we are also working toward long-term systemic solutions to address this issue.”

The LCSO also issued a statement from Laurens County Sheriff Don Reynolds:

“Keeping our schools and our children safe will always be our first priority,” Reynolds said. “We strive to make sure that our future generations have a safe and secure learning environment. Any threats and/or inappropriate comments which cause fear in a school environment will not be tolerated and will be dealt with swiftly and accordingly.”

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