Did Brandywine Springs fail to notify parents of an in-school incident?

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Three threats at local Delaware schools are under investigation with at least one of the schools that went into a state of “Heightened Security”

WILMINGTON (DE) By DELAWARE NEWSLINE INVISTIGATES: Delaware State police are investigating three incidents of school threats in New Castle County that are putting parents, students, and facilities on edge.

A Delaware Newsline investigation has revealed some very disturbing images that circulated on some Brandywine Springs Elementary student’s phones that may make the hair on your arms stand up.

The incident unfolded at the school on Duncan Road in Wilmington on Friday September 3, 2021.

The student in question allegedly made threats to other students and sent disturbing images to their phones that depicted a child in a gas mask holding a gun to his head with his finger on the trigger. The student allegedly also made threats to other students saying he was going to “shoot the students and teachers, and had a list of targets.”

Photo Submitted | A disturbing image of a child in a gas mask holding a gun to his head with his finger on the trigger was sent to Delaware Newsline today.

Delaware Newsline obtained those images exclusively. Out of respect for the student’s family and for his safety, we’ve obscured the students image so he could not be identified.

A parent who did not want to be identified out of an abundance of safety for her child who attends the school, said her son was one of the students who not only received threats from the student while in school but also received the disturbing image on his phone from the student later that night.

She entrusted the school to handle the threats at first, but when her son received the image later that night, she went into full parent mode and was outraged.

When the students who heard these threats reported it to their teacher, the teachers response was for them to “write down what he’s doing,” she said.

The parent, who says the school never notified parents about the incident, was outraged that she was not notified on the day that the incident occurred and that the student who agedly made these threats, was allowed to return to class the same day. 

According to an email notification that was sent from the school’s principal to parents, the notification appears to have been sent after the school learned about the incident being made public on social media by a parent, and not on the day that the incident allegedly happened. The notification also states…”there was no threat to our school”

Photo Submitted | A school notification appears to of been sent after the incident and conclusion of a Delaware State Police investigation and not on the day that the incident allegedly occurred.

“The school should notify the parents of this happening regardless if the kids were in danger or not.,” Said a grandparent, who’s grandchildren attend the school. “If this kid was telling kids he’s going to kill them or shoot them, that kid should not have been allowed back in school until after the investigation was over.”

“Another student was specifically targeted by the student, saying he was going to shoot her legs and arms so she couldn’t move.,” She added. “The child should have a psychiatric evaluation.,” she added.

Delaware Newsline reached out to the schools principal, Curtis Bedford, who refused to provide comment or answer questions, and referred us to the schools Chief Communications Officer.

“At approximately 7 PM on Friday, September 3, school administration received a report of an alleged threat to the school. Immediately upon learning of the alleged threat, school and district administration immediately contacted authorities and the district’s Office of Safety and Security for investigation.” Said Taylor Green, Chief Communications Officer for Red Clay Consolidated School District. “The Delaware State Police deemed it to be non-credible.”

Avoiding further questions about the student, Green explained that Student disciplinary actions were handled in accordance with the Red Clay Consolidated School District Student Code of Conduct and that she was “not at liberty to discuss individual student matters.”

Delaware Newsline reached out to the Delaware State Police who was investigating the incident. In an e-mail response, a Detective, after investigating the incident, deemed the student not to be a threat and the matter was handed back over to the school.

“This incident involved a student who displayed a picture of a gun on social media. Detectives investigated the incident and it was determined no crime occurred. The discipline was then handed back to the school.” | Jason Hatchell, Delaware State Police.

Delaware Newsline Investigates still wasn’t satisficed and pressed for more information from state police. In a phone interview, CPL. Gary Fournier, who heads the Press Information Office at the Delaware State Police said, “The gun, which was a WWII model was not operational and was not capable of firing. The Detective investigated all parties involved, went to the student’s home and interviewed the family and determined the student was not a threat.”

Photo Submitted | Gun Detail

This was just the start of a series of school incidents. On Thursday September 9, 2021, a group of teens including a two adult males, one of which was armed with a handgun, was attested at Glasgow High after they showed up at the school at the end of the school day and began attacking students leaving the school building.

Then on Friday September 10, 2021, Skyline Middle School went into a “Heightened Security” after receiving several threats by phone said Taylor Green, a spokesperson for the Red Clay Consolidated School District. The school contacted police who responded in droves. Police had no suspects in custody after a search of the area by multiple law enforcement agencies including Delaware State Police Aviation. The school was declared safe around 12:30 p.m. and resumed as normal the rest of the day.

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Delaware Newsline is a digital Delaware News Organization that provides local and national breaking news content to its Delaware and U.S. audience, by utilizing multiple platforms including web, social media, and video.

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