Law enforcement on patrol in Ririe after threatening message found on school desk

LAW

RIRIE — Law enforcement will have a presence in Ririe schools this week after a potentially threatening note was found underneath a desk.

In November, Ririe School District Superintendent Jeff Gee says a Ririe High School student leaned under a desk to grab something and found a message written in pencil on the wood underneath.

“School shooting March 8, 2023,” the note said, according to Gee.

The student told a teacher, who told the principal and eventually law enforcement.

Gee says they haven’t been able to identify who’s responsible for writing the note.

“We don’t know if it was written during that class. At the end of last school year, that desk had been moved into a different classroom. There were no seating charts at the time in that classroom, and students were in and out of there all year. Narrowing it down to a specific student just wasn’t possible,” Gee tells EastIdahoNews.com.

Administrators have been working with the Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office and Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office over the last several months to determine how to respond. On March 2, Gee announced on the district’s Facebook page that deputies would be “in our schools and on our streets Wednesday” as a safety precaution.

“Student safety is our top priority. The Ririe School District takes all threats seriously,” Gee wrote on Facebook. “We will continue to work with law enforcement and follow their guidance to ensure the safety of Ririe School District students and staff.”

message from gee
Message from Jeff Gee to parents posted on Facebook

While law enforcement continue to investigate, Sgt. Bryan Lovell with the Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office says they haven’t identified a suspect. Appropriate action will be taken if they find out who’s responsible.

At this point, Lovell says there is no specific threat of something happening on Wednesday, but deputies will be at the high school and elementary school all week just in case.

“If students or other people think this is a good idea or funny, it’s not. It causes a lot of stress and worry for parents and other students. It’s no laughing matter, and if someone knows who wrote that (message) … they should report it (immediately),” says Lovell.

Gee says he and other administrators have felt some anxiety about this, and they’re grateful to law enforcement for responding and for guiding them through this process.

“We feel confident that Bonneville County is doing everything they can do to make sure the kids and the staff out here are safe,” says Gee.

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