By Megan Kelley
In the early hours of the day on May 29 the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office received two different calls regarding a supposed threat against Lake Orion High School.
One of these calls, from the Michigan State Police’s “OK to say” line, cited an Instagram post titled “killthekids98” which referenced LOHS along with other posts regarding schools in Macomb County.
The MSP also referenced another post that stated “I’m going to shoot Davis on May 29th” along with several posts that showed pictures of two boys with handguns, said Orion Township Supervisor Chris Barnett in a Public Safety Update he posted online.
While investigating the Sterling Heights threat, an analyst from the Michigan State Police forwarded the Instagram reference about Lake Orion High School to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office Orion Twp. Substation, said Lt. Dan Toth, commander of the substation.
“They forwarded it to us because they don’t know what it is and what it isn’t until they vett it,” Toth said. “That Instagram post (about Lake Orion) was not related to this other post.”
The OCSO dispatched extra patrol vehicles and officers to LOHS to ensure that all safety precautions were taken.
The OCSO learned around 9:30-9:45 a.m. that the threat was contained to Sterling Heights, which did have a credible threat.
A 13-year-old from Hamtramck has been arrested in connection with shooting threats to Sterling Heights schools. The threats reportedly targeted multiple schools.
Sterling Heights PD received another complaint of a copy-cat Instagram school threat toward Davis Junior High School. A 14-year-old girl has been arrested for allegedly threatening to shoot up schools in Sterling Heights.
“The post about Lake Orion was determined to be unfounded,” Toth said. “It was really a non-event but we didn’t know that at time so we sent an extra couple of patrol cars to the high school.”
Toth said the sheriff’s office, and law enforcement in general, frequently spends time chasing down information to verify whether a threat is credible or not.
“In today’s day and age, you just can’t leave it to chance,” he said.
When reached for comment Lake Orion Community Schools Communications Director Mark Snyder stated, “We assure families our schools are safe whenever it is necessary for us to inform them. There was no threat at the high school today so there was no need to notify parents.”