Charges are possible against a 15 year old Cohoes High School student after police say a threat was phoned into 911 Tuesday afternoon about an imminent shooting.
The district has released a statement saying that police quickly became aware of the threat, and determined it was not credible.
Assistant Chief Tom Ross says “There were no weapons found on him nor at his residence, there was a search conducted.”
But students, like Baazir Tolbert, say it was a scary situation.
“The principal said in announcements about there’s a lockdown, lockdown, I’m thinking it’s a joke or something, like practical routine of doing a lockdown but it was serious cuz my teacher was scared he was like ’Okay this is serious we all need to get down this is not a drill’”
Mayor Shawn Morse says the city remains safe for children and points to the Safe Streets Initiative as an example.
“We have our police at the schools in the morning. They’re there at dismissal, and that allowed us to respond in a very fast manner, we train regularly to make sure that we know how to respond.”
At the same time, police in Colonie are now said to be looking into an online threat at Colonie Central High School.
According to NewsChannel13, 18 year old Austin Bishop was arrested early Wednesday and charged with making a terroristic threat. School officials say the incident started following a comment made on a school bus.
Extra security is in place Wednesday morning.
School officials went on social media Tuesday night to say the school is as safe as it's ever been.
Since the Parkland shooting, there have been 15 threats of one sort or another against schools, and some are facing criminal charges.
Capital Counseling Chief Clinical Officer Phil Rainer says he sees this as a combination of mental health issues and a sign of the times.
“But I think it’s also an expression of frustration and anger, and the difficulty that they’re having in finding effective solutions to their problems.”
Since the Florida shooting, it seems the number of school-based violence and threats have increased dramatically.
In our area, there've been 15 threats of one form or another.
Two adult students have been arrested, and eight more detained.
So what happens to these young people?
Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple says it depends on their age, and the severity of the charges.
“The more times than not, what happens next, probation takes over, they monitor him, he or her is sent home, and basically it’s up to the parents to be parents.”
But, if the charges warrant, a judge could send the child to a juvenile detention center, and Apple says that just about always marks the beginning of trouble.
But, if a judge sends the teen to juvenile detention, that could be the start of trouble.
“We’ll get somebody in at 16, and I’ll see him 15, 18 years from now still doing life on the installment plan, going in for six, going in for four.
A group called the Educator's School Safety Network estimates that since the Florida shooting, the number of threats nationwide has jumped from 10 to 70 a day.
UPDATE TO STORY: Today (Wed) we're learning that another arrest was made. A 13 year old is charged with Making a Terroristic Threat . The charge is based on two Instagram postings suggesting he was attempting to acquire a firearm and a possible shooting at the school. The social media posts were reported to the Saratoga County Sheriff's Office by the Galway School District.
Photo: Cohoes High & Colonie Central High Websites