Carroll school emptied after threat is made

March 13, 2004|By Jennifer McMenamin | Jennifer McMenamin,SUN STAFF

Authorities evacuated North Carroll High School yesterday afternoon after school staff found a threatening message on a mirror in a girls' bathroom and a bomb-sniffing dog brought in by police focused on a trash can outside the building, law enforcement and school officials said.

By 6:30 p.m. - four hours after the evacuation - bomb technicians from the state fire marshal's office found in the trash can only ceiling tiles and building materials discarded during repairs to the school, said Maj. Thomas Long of the Carroll County Sheriff's Office.

A sweep of the school by canine detection units and police failed to produce any additional alerts for explosives in or around the school, Long said.

School officials called police about 1:30 p.m. after finding the threat in a bathroom. Neither school administrators nor police officials would describe the contents of the threat. Several students said a note taped to the bathroom mirror read, "Everyone will die at 2 p.m."

About 1:45 p.m., the school declared a lockdown, drawing blinds, locking doors and prohibiting students or staff from moving around the building.

When the bomb-sniffing dog signaled at 2:24 p.m. that there might be an explosive device in a trash can on the east side of the building, authorities decided to evacuate, Long said.

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