The Student News Site of Richard Montgomery High School

The Tide

The Student News Site of Richard Montgomery High School

The Tide

The Student News Site of Richard Montgomery High School

The Tide

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Bomb threats at Blair High School cause school day interruptions

Montgomery+Blair+High+School+was+one+of+many+schools+in+MCPS+that+received+bomb+threats+in+October.
Courtesy of Oren Engal
Montgomery Blair High School was one of many schools in MCPS that received bomb threats in October.

In October, an anonymous 12-year-old sent numerous threats via email to Montgomery Blair High School, stating there were bombs in the building that would “go off” at unspecified times, causing worry and panic among staff and students. Each time, the school was evacuated so police could search the premises to make sure there were no bombs on school grounds. However, the threats were ultimately deemed illegitimate and learning resumed as normal, at the cost of significant disruptions to the school day.

Despite this, some students used the time off as a break from studying. 

“It was a good time to socialize and stuff,” Blair freshman Kenneth Liu said. “Though it was kind of cold outside.”

However, threats such as these require a lot of resources from law enforcement. According to the Washington Post, Montgomery Police spent more than $20,000 responding to countywide threats since Oct. 13. 

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“Typically, a bomb threat requires a substantial response from law enforcement agencies which include the mobilization of personnel, resources, and most of the time specialized units. This can strain the police department’s available resources and divert them from other critical tasks or responses occurring at the same time,” the director of the Montgomery County Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division Captain Marc Erme said. 

However, he also stressed the importance of investigating a threat even if it does not seem credible at first.

“Even if a bomb threat doesn’t initially seem credible, it is important for law enforcement to conduct a thorough investigation to ensure the safety of the community, deter potential threats and maintain the public’s trust,” he said. 

Many expressed shock after it was discovered by Montgomery County Police and MCPS IT staff that the person making the bomb threats was 12 years old. “It was really surprising,” Lui said. “I expected it to be someone from Blair, but I guess not.”

“It is very disappointing to see a 12-year-old participate in this type of behavior,” Captain Erme said. “It is not uncommon for young individuals to engage in risky or inappropriate behavior without fully understanding the consequences. However, in this situation, the individual involved did have knowledge that they could not be criminally charged.”

Capitan Erme emphasizes the importance of understanding the reasons for this behavior in order to properly address the situation. Although some might advocate for harsher consequences, Captain Erme said that “the overall focus should be to provide young children with the proper support to help them make better choices in the future, while taking appropriate steps to prevent any potential harm.”

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