Phone Threat Regarding Blackham School Was A Hoax

From Bill Kaempffer, public safety spokesman:

Police responded to 911 calls reporting shots fired at Blackham School at 425 Thorme St. today. The call was a hoax, and police identified the person, a juvenile and student at the school, who made the calls.

The first officer, Officer Peter Koval, arrived within one minute, immediately entered the school and proceeded directly to the room mentioned by the caller. Additional officers arrived seconds later.

“The call was a hoax and there was never any credible threat,” said Police Chief Joseph L. Gaudett Jr. “Our response was immediate. We know in law enforcement that we do not have the luxury of time in calls of this nature.”

The department already had additional layers of security in place at all city schools as part of “Operation Step Up.” The additional security was in place surrounding the anniversary of the Newtown school shooting.

“I’m grateful that this call was a hoax, but I am proud of the actions by police,” said Mayor Bill Finch. “We can take nothing for granted when it comes to the safety of our children.”

The calls were made at about 2 p.m. The calls promoted a partial lock-in where students and staff were asked to remain in place. Other students were evacuated from the building for a short time while police made sure the facility was safe.

Investigators were quickly able to determine the identity of the caller and recovered the phone used to make the calls. The investigation remains active.



  1. *** It’s a shame, but it sounds like it was probably some young ignorant “dummy” who apparently could be a student at that same school! Suspension and Y/O criminal charges should be filed against this person if they are indeed a student at the school. This type of prank is not a game and needs to be seriously addressed by the BOE and Police Dept. *** Time Out or A Good Old-fashioned Whippin’ and Letter To Santa? ***


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