Howland teen accused of school threat on social media

HOWLAND — A Howland Middle School student is facing a charge of inducing panic in connection to a social media post that contained a what was first thought to be a handgun and an assault rifle, according to police.

The post Thursday on Snapchat was captioned “Going to be fun at TCTC tomorrow.”

Eighth-grade students in Howland Local Schools were scheduled to go to the Trumbull Career and Technical Center on Friday to tour the facility in Champion, but as a precaution after the message was made known to police, the field trip was canceled.

Police officer Eric Bowker, a school resource officer in the district, said he filed the felony charge against the eighth-grade student on Friday.

A report states a parent of a student called police just after 7:30 p.m. after her daughter saw the post. The call led police to investigate and with the help of Snapchat, they positively confirmed the sender. The student was taken into custody Thursday at his home, Bowker said

The guns in the photo turned out to be a replica rifle and an airsoft gun, Bowker said.

“We work very, very well and have a great relationship with the school board, excellent communication and zero tolerance,” Bowker said. “Some kids get it, some kids don’t. Unfortunately these are the consequences.”

This is the fifth time a student in the district has been arrested in connection to a threat since the mass shooting in mid-February at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.


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