Stelly’s Seecondary School in Central Saanich (Hugo Wong/News Staff)

B.C. student arrested for school threat on social media

An online post showed them firing a weapon with the caption ‘practicing for school’

A Vancouver Island high school student has been arrested for a social media post showing them firing a weapon into a small target with the caption “practicing for school.” Police recommended charges of uttering threats and mischief.

The male student at Stelly’s Secondary School in Victoria was arrested without incident on Monday, March 5 and released on a promise to appear and undertaking with several conditions.

Sgt. Andy Duke of Central Saanich Police said they are still investigating where and when the video was made. He said the video, which was posted to Instagram, was seen by Stelly’s students who brought it to the attention to the school, who then contacted the police.

Duke said these types of incidents are not common in the area, but there have been more reports to police following the recent Florida school shooting. He said at this time, there did not appear to be a connection to the lockdown at Bayside Middle School on March 1, when police spent four hours searching for a possible masked person with a weapon.

MARCH 1: Lockdown lifted at Bayside Middle School.

“People are much more perceptive of potential problems, so we’re being more aware of them,” said Duke.

Duke said the police are still determining whether there is any link between this Instagram post and some threatening graffiti also found in Stelly’s washrooms last week, which prompted principal Sally Hansen to circulate two letters to parents — one on March 1 and another on March 6.

On March 1, Hansen said school officials “do not believe there is any substance to the reported message at this time.” In that letter, Hansen wrote that staff had not seen the threatening message themselves, and student reports were not consistent, though they did involve Central Saanich Police at that time.

RELATED: Largest emergency response for Saanich school district.

On March 6, Hansen wrote in an update that additional social media posts have “served to increase student anxiety, particularly around the date of March 8th.” Stelly’s will be open and operating as normal, but tests and due dates will not be assigned that day.

In an interview Tuesday, SD63 superintendent Dave Eberwein said while he could not comment on the specifics of an ongoing investigation, the school district has known about the concerns “for a couple of days, and have been working with police digging deeper into the post we found.” He said the district does not plan to significantly change its policies and procedures for the time being.

“I think the message that the parents and the community should take away from this is that we take things very seriously. Our primary purpose is to make sure we have safe places for everybody.”

For students that do require support for their academic, behaviour, or emotional support, Eberwein said there is “wraparound” care in the form of school and district counsellors, and they work with parents or the external community if other support is needed.

Updated on March 8, 2018 at 9:55 a.m. with comment from SD63 superintendent Dave Eberwein.

Correction: In an earlier version of this story, it was reported that a weapon was fired into a snowbank due to incorrect information from police. The weapon was actually fired at a small target.



reporter@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Okanagan Lake levels stay steady but snowpack is growing: officials

Whether or not the tributaries and creeks flood depends on how suddenly the snowpack begins to melt,

Kelowna council approves rental housing project

Plan for former packinghouse site calls for 148 rental units

Kelowna crew knocks down attic fire in Rutland

No one home at the time as Kelowna Fire Department extinguishes small blaze on Cactus Road

Okanagan realtors add voices to anti-speculation tax coalition

This speculation tax is likely to harm the very people the government is trying to protect

Bolt cutters and bear spray used in Kelowna break-in

“Both suspects were taken into police custody…”

Sunshine and above-average temperatures all week

We can expect to enjoy this warm sunshine all week long

As Osoyoos Indian Band flourishes, so too does Okanagan’s wine tourism

Indigenous practices have driven growth of South Okanagan’s wine history and agricultural influence

Penticton robbery trial starts days before accused’s murder trial

Narcotics, cash stolen from pharmacy; accused scheduled for murder trial next week in Abbotsford

Judith Guichon steps down as Lieutenant Governor of B.C.

Election decision didn’t make her best moments from the past six years

Vancouver to rake in $30 million in empty homes tax in first year

The tax is the first of its kind in Canada, and was intended to address the city’s near-zero vacancy rate

Toronto songstress shares indie vibes with Okanagan

Emma Cook will rock Penticton’s The Elite April 28 before she hits Vernon’s Record City April 29

B.C.’s snowpack continues to increase, melting delayed

River Forecast Centre official says sudden melting further into the season could cause flooding

Student produces gun at Princeton Secondary School

Starter pistol confiscated, RCMP are investigating

Another B.C. First Nation voices support for Kinder Morgan pipeline

Simpcw First Nation claims people living on one-third of pipeline route support the project

Most Read