Local News

Walsenburg teen arrested for alleged school threat

Walsenburg teen arrested for school threats

WALSENBURG, Colo. - A 16-year-old who attended John Mall High School is in jail facing a felony for alleged threats made against former classmates.

The Walsenburg Police Department says a parent gave law enforcement the initial tip about an alleged threat on February 5th

While investigators looked into the allegations, John Mall High postponed a basketball game on February 8th against Swink, because of concern for students and fans safety.

But on February 10th, Walsenburg PD closed the investigation because they say they didn't find enough credible evidence.

That changed on February 20th when new information came to the attention of investigators.  Soon after law enforcement decided that a threat was imminent, so the teen was placed under arrest.

Police have recommended he be charged with one count of inciting destruction of life or property, a felony, and one count of interference with the function of a school, a misdemeanor.

Students and parents KRDO spoke with around Walsenburg say they continue to be worried about what the teen may be capable of if he is released from jail.

"With the mind I've seen on him…yeah, I'd believe he'd follow through," one woman who knew the teen told KRDO.  She declined to have her identity used because she worries this isn't over.

"There was a hit list," the woman said.  "The police were also asking what teachers he had problems with; I'm wondering if there were teachers on that list too."

Police wouldn't confirm or deny if there was any "hit list."

 Investigators also wouldn't discuss what caused the alleged threats to be made.  Parents KRDO spoke with say the teen had been arrested for selling drugs in late January.  Law enforcement did confirm that the last week of January, officers responded to a medical call at the school where a female student was transported to the hospital.  A student had been reportedly "passing out pills."  After an investigation, that student was arrested.  Police wouldn't say if it was the same teen.

They say the arrest affidavit has been sealed.  It will be up to the District Attorney's office to decide if the juvenile will be charged as an adult.

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