MOULTRIE, Ga. — Colquitt County’s alternative school was temporarily placed on lockdown on Monday evening after a student reported that an ex-boyfriend had threatened to bring a gun to the Park Avenue campus.
On Wednesday, police arrested Norman Park teen-ager in connection with the incident.
A Colquitt County Achievement Center employee told police that a 17-year-old student had arrived at school in tears and told a teacher about text messages she had received. The school is located in part of the former Colquitt County High campus.
The text messages, which she said were from the former boyfriend, told her to leave school and get in his car when he pulled up, and that if she did not he would “(kill) myself in the parking lot and it’s your fault.”
The school called for police assistance, and the teacher “took appropriate measures to lock down the school,” police said.
Police spoke with the female student on Tuesday and she and her parents wished to prosecute.
Police arrested Jacob Willis, 17, 170 Smokey Bear Road, on Wednesday afternoon and charged him with harassing communication and disruption of a public school. Both charges are misdemeanors.
No one with a gun showed up at the school and students were not in danger, Colquitt County Schools Superintendent Doug Howell said on Wednesday. The school was on lockdown for a short time until officials determined there was no danger.
“We’d rather them (personnel) do something and err on the side of caution” and take measures that would protect students, Howell said during a telephone interview.
Officials lock down campuses when there is a potential threat, for example closing Wilie J. Williams Middle School when police were searching for a suspect near the campus.
Police have received a handful of disorderly conduct reports at the alternative school campus over the last several weeks. Most of those involved students being disruptive by refusing to follow instructions or using vulgar language.
One involved a student making a threat on another student’s life on Nov. 3. The juvenile accused in the incident was detained by the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice.
Howell said that despite the disruptions, the alternative school assists many students in getting back on track and completing their high school education.
“There’s also a lot of good things going on over there,” he said. “A lot of kids get their lives together.
“That alternative school serves a great function. It gives a lot of kids a second chance they might not (otherwise) get.”