Monday, April 21, 2014
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Ponderosa High taking precautions after gun threat

By
From page A3 | December 20, 2013 | 7 Comments

A threat of a school shooting sparked an e-mail response from the Ponderosa High School administration and an increased presence of El Dorado County Sheriff’s deputies on campus.

On Dec. 18, a threat of a school shooting was found written in Sharpie in a girls’ bathroom on campus, said Principal Lisa Garrett. It claimed there would be a shooting Friday, Dec. 20. In response, the administration sent an e-mail to parents.

“The Sheriff’s Office is investigating,” Garrett said Thursday. She noted there would be a strong presence of deputies and probation officers on the campus Thursday and Friday, which was confirmed by EDSO Lt. Tim Becker. “The school is also in lockdown right now,” she said. Classes would have their doors locked through Friday.

With 15 years experience in the district, she said that it was “not uncommon” for an incident such as this to happen during finals time, comparing it to a recent bomb scare on the Harvard college campus. This was echoed in the letter to parents. “The message is similar to hoaxes that have been written at other schools in an attempt to escape a day of school or a final exam. It may be a copycat of the Harvard incident that took place on Monday, Dec. 16.”

Despite this, the school is not taking chances. “We take everything seriously. We have put all the proper procedures into place,” Garrett said. ”There was no particular person, group or staff member identified in the graffiti,” something that often happens when a student is angry and leaves such a message, she said.

Though it is unknown who wrote the message in the bathroom, “All staff have been advised to keep an extra vigilant eye out for anything suspicious or abnormal, and report anything suspicious to school administration,” the e-mail to parents said.

Ponderosa High School is on a modified schedule Thursday and Friday due to finals; students will not, due to the threat, be released from class even if they finish their finals early.

Contact Cole Mayer at 530-344-5068 or cmayer@mtdemocrat.net. Follow @CMayerMtDemo.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 7 comments

  • Frustrated With Cole~December 19, 2013 - 1:59 pm

    Cole - Thanks for telling who ever did this that the students are on a modified schedule - You obviously do not have children!!!!

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  • A High School StudentDecember 21, 2013 - 5:33 pm

    Every high school student in the nation has a modified schedule due to finals, the author of this story obviously understands finals better than a supposed parent.

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  • DanielDecember 22, 2013 - 11:53 pm

    Don't blame the messanger. Cole is simply communicating the information he has been given. A few months ago I learned by reading in the papwer that my son's middle school was on lock down due to a felony warrant being served near by. I would have appreciated a call, or email. Good Job Cole keeping us parents informed.

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  • Frustrated With COleDecember 23, 2013 - 12:29 pm

    Daniel, I agree with you that a school should email or call and Ponderosa did call along with email the parents. As Cole should know as a writer for the paper it probably was not the best judgement call to print all of that information. A follow-up article could have mentioned the latter paragraph. Others do not need to know of a modified schedule. Yes, it is easy to find out but the person responsible for the threat is obviously not thinking clearly. As a parent who has a child at the school it would have been safer for a media outlet to let the public know after school had ended that they had a modified schedule not before hand...just sayin

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  • Psalm 91December 19, 2013 - 9:28 pm

    Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.[a] I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked. If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread on the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent. “Because he[b] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”

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  • Frustrated With Cole~December 20, 2013 - 10:30 am

    Psalm 91~ Thank you~~Merry Christmas!!!

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  • profilerDecember 21, 2013 - 12:10 am

    It shouldn't be too hard to find the perp the school has handwriting samples of all the students just look for a female that begins and ends all sentences with an abbreviation and uses "like" at least five times per paragraph..............that should narrow it down...........................or not.

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