US seeks competency tests for threat-case suspect

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EAST ST. LOUIS, IL (AP) – Federal prosecutors are seeking competency testing of a western Illinois high school special education teacher accused of threatening to blow up her school.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Donald Wilkerson is weighing the U.S. government’s request argued in court Monday in the case of 36-year-old Michelle L. Smith.

Federal prosecutors called the Jerseyville woman a danger to the community and herself.

Authorities allege that Smith left a letter in a restroom at Calhoun County High School in Hardin, about 40 miles northwest of St. Louis. Investigators say the April 28 note warned “this school is going down today. KABOOM!”

Smith was arrested the next day. She’s been placed on paid administrative leave.

Her public defender, Phillip Kavanaugh III, says his client had no means to carry ot the alleged threats.

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