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Snapchat school threat leads police to Parkway West student

ST. LOUIS, MO — Chesterfield police contacted a 17-year-old Parkway West student after a threat surfaced on Snapchat.  They determined that there was no plan to commit a violent act. School will go on as scheduled Thursday at Parkway West High School with an increased police presence.

Many students and parents reported this threat to authorities. The Chesterfield Police Department was made aware of the threat Wednesday at 10:30pm. Parkway School District officials helped police to identify and contact the student.

Investigators determined that the teen had no plan to commit a violent act and had no means to carry out the threat. The case will be referred to the St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for consideration of criminal charges.

Principal Jeremy Mitchell sent this message to Parkway West parents Wednesday:

“I was made aware of a threat to West High through social media at approximately 10:20 PM this evening. Thanks to assistance from numerous concerned students and their families, we were able to pinpoint the account from which the post originated. I have been in contact with the student, the family, and the Chesterfield Police; and fully believe that students will be safe at West High tomorrow. The Chesterfield Police’s investigation is ongoing, and the department will provide additional presence tomorrow morning in the interest of student safety, as our safety is of the upmost importance.”

This follow-up message was sent Thursday morning:

“In working with the Chesterfield Police Department, a West High student has admitted to posting this threat and is not at West High today. We take these matters very seriously and do not condone this behavior. The actions of this student are in violation of our discipline code, and the student will be held accountable within the parameters of the district’s discipline policy and the law.

Please take this time to review appropriate uses of social media with your child.

Again, thanks to the numerous students and families who contacted me last night.  I appreciate the shared responsibility that we all have in keeping our students and staff safe.

Jeremy Mitchell”

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