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Mercer County State's Attorney Meeghan Lee

SHERRARD — Four students under 13 years old are responsible for recent bomb threats made in the Sherrard School District, according to Mercer County State’s Attorney Meeghan Lee. Superintendent Allen Boucher said four threat messages were left in bathrooms at three of the district’s schools during the past two weeks. The students who wrote the messages have been identified, he said, and all four have confessed. None of the threats were considered to be credible. “The district is thankful these school threat incidents were not credible, and it wants to take advantage of the opportunity to evaluate our procedures for dealing with school threats,” said Mr. Boucher. A meeting requested by Mercer County Sheriff David Staley was held at Sherrard High School this week to address parents’ concerns about the messages. “We hope to ease the minds of parents and explain what options are available for the state,” Ms. Lee said. Because the district includes both Rock Island and Mercer counties, sheriff’s departments from both counties were included in the investigation. “We are fortunate and gracious that we have two superb county sheriffs offices that work together on our behalf and ensure the safety and security of our students, staff, teachers, parents and visitors,” said Sherrard school board president Rhys Fullerlove. He also said the meeting offered an opportunity to unite the district as one school community. “We must remember we are dealing with children, young kids who do not think about the full consequences of their actions,” Ms. Lee said. “All threats must be taken seriously. Any other response would be irresponsible and potentially deadly. “Response to bomb threats must be taken seriously,” she said, adding protocol includes contacting parents while schools are put on lock down for authorities to immediately investigate. “It’s an ugly situation.”

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