Hoax, rumors of threats disrupt Tennessee schools

Associated Press • Apr 20, 2007 at 10:36 AM

SEYMOUR, Tenn. - A high school student was arrested after he admitted to making a fake bomb at his eastern Tennessee high school on Friday, while rumors of an attack caused hundreds of students to leave a Nashville high school.

The Sevier County Sheriff's Deparment was called to Seymour High School for an "alleged bomb threat" four days after the massacre at Virginia Tech and on the eighth anniversary of the shootings at Columbine High School. There have been similar threats of shootings and bombs at schools around the country this week.

About 700 or 800 students were pulled out of McGavock High School in Nashville by their parents on Friday after students began circulating rumors that there was an impending Columbine-style attack, The Tennessean reported.

School officials believed there was no threat after investigating the rumors, said Ralph Thompson, Nashville's assistant superintendent for student services.

In Seymour, Sheriff Ron Seals said one student, whose name was not released, admitted to "manufacturing a ‘hoax device' from basic trash material found in the stands of the football stadium while in P.E. class."

The student was charged with possession of a prohibited weapon classified as a "hoax device," a Class C felony.

The school was evacuated temporarily while authorities searched the building, and classes resumed later. Authorities said their investigation was continuing. A high school senior in Nashville was arrested earlier this week for threatening to carry out an attack like the one at Virginia Tech. On Wednesday a 13-year-old student at the private Currey Ingram Academy in Williamson County was expelled after officials said he wrote the name of six students on a blackboard, titled "definitely kill." It was not immediately clear if he would face charges. AP-CS-04-20-07 1516EDT

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