Letter Found On Middle School Campus Threatens Faculty Members. - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/23/04 - Tyler

Letter Found On Middle School Campus Threatens Faculty Members.

A letter, threatening the lives of two teachers and an administrator was found at Hubbard Middle School in Tyler Thursday. The author of the note also threatened to commit suicide. Today, security on campus has been beefed up, as police and school officials search for the author. Within an hour of finding the note Thursday morning, Tyler Independent School District police officers were interviewing students, looking for ties between the people who were threatened and kids they may have in class.

"Whether a prank or not, it was something we couldn't take lightly," said Sergeant Mark Tedder. "It was something we had to investigate. It's to be classified as a terrorist threat."

A Smith County deputy was assigned to campus, lockers were searched, and parents were notified. But so far, no student has been identified as the author.

"The first thing I thought about yesterday was columbine," said Jill Lowe, who was one of those parents who received a letter yesterday. She remains concerned today for the safety of her 8th grade daughter.

"I had assumed that this child had been caught yesterday on campus and was not attending school anymore, but that's not the case at all," said Lowe. "The child is there today, and could very easily carry out this threat."

"I realize all our parents are concerned about their child," said Hubbard Principal Tucker Dudley. "I'm also concerned about their child, and that's why we're putting in place all the other precautions."

Principal Dudley says the added security will remain in place until the author of the letter is found. In the meantime, she wants parents to know, it's that author who is contemplating suicide, who she is most worried about.

"I feel like parents need to know that there are students out there that are in trouble, and it could be their very own child, and that they need to have dialogue with their children," said Dudley. "They need to talk about these kinds of things, and all kinds of things, but I think that this can turn into a positive thing."

A rewarded is being offered for information leading to the author of the letter. Because of who was threatened and where the letter was found, school officials believe it is an 8th grade student who is responsible. Police won't reveal the exact wording of the letter, but they say it was typed in large print, probably on a computer.

Kevin Berns reporting.
kberns@kltv.com

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