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STREATOR — A Woodland High School student admitted to writing a threatening message on a bathroom wall Tuesday, but told school officials he had no plans to follow through with the threat.

It was at least the fourth bomb threat at the district since April 2016.

School officials received word of the most recent threat after school hours on Tuesday, said Superintendent Ryan McGuckin. Officials contacted the Livingston County Sheriff’s Department and two deputies worked with the administration on searching and securing the building and looking for suspects.

“The administration looked through our camera system to log who had been in and out of the restroom in the hours assumed the incident most likely occurred,” McGuckin said in a statement released Wednesday. Those students were identified and interviewed, he said, resulting in one of them admitting "to the offense of writing on the stall.”

It was determined the student had no intention of following through with the written threat, he added.  

McGuckin said the district is cooperating with the sheriff’s department on the investigation. A sheriff’s spokesman said the investigation is continuing but declined further comment.

Anyone with additional information regarding the threat is urged to contact McGuckin at 815-672-5974 or the sheriff’s department at 815-844-0911.

The district has had issues with bomb threats before. At the Woodland Elementary and Junior High School in Streator on April 4, a student found a piece of paper in the school that said “Bomb at 11.” Students were sent to Streator High School while the sheriff’s department and Illinois State Police searched the school, parking lot and cars with dogs. 

In February, a student discovered a calculator with a typed message that said, “Bomb at 2.” That threat also was unfounded.

On Dec. 9, a high school student discovered the words "BOM 1" written on a stall in the school and a teacher confirmed the note had not been present earlier in the day. Through security camera footage, administrators determined which students entered the bathroom around the time the note was written. The students were interviewed, and one admitted to writing the message. The student claimed to have no intention of following through with the written threat.

On April 21, 2016, a student found a calculator displaying a message — "bomb go off at 11:00 today, this was not a joke" — and reported it to officials. Students were evacuated to athletic fields and school was dismissed at 12:15 p.m.

Livingston County sheriff's deputies and Illinois State Police investigators/bomb technicians with two dogs were called in. They searched the building and checked each car in the parking lot but found nothing.

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Follow Kevin Barlow on Twitter: @pg_barlow


Agriculture Reporter

Agriculture reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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