Social Media Watchdog Group Alerts Edmond School Of Student Threats

Tuesday, May 13th 2014, 7:32 pm
By: News 9

A virtual school threat was halted before ever becoming a reality. It's all thanks to a watchdog program 1,300 miles away.

The threats against Edmond Santa Fe started and stopped online.

When we send a tweet, our followers are first to see what we say, but who else is watching?

That question was answered when one Edmond student "tweeted" what he considered jokes. Only Edmond police consider them threats.

"If you would not stand on a table in the cafeteria and shout out this information, do not put this on social media," Public Information Officer for Edmond Schools, Susan Parks-Schlepp, said.

A lesson most likely learned, especially now at the expense of Nadine Abdelkader's peer.

"I've heard a few people talk about it here and there," Santa Fe senior Nadine Abdelkader said.

On May 2, Edmond Santa Fe principal received a tip that a student was tweeting threats against the school. Administrators found a handful of suggestive tweets on that student's Twitter.

One read, "I'm gonna shoot up the school if I fail the EOI."

Another read in part, "Some white kid better shoot up the school or I will."

"He mentioned these were made as a get more followers," Parks-Schlepp said.

"I'm sure he wasn't serious, but it still needs to be taken seriously," Abdelkader said.

Authorities searched the student and his home and determined there were no real plans to carry out any act of violence. Although, police reports show that the district attorney could still press charges.

"Watch what you say, cause it can really scare people," Abdelkader said.

As for the tip, it came from 1,300 miles away in Washington D.C. A watchdog group called "STG Sentinel" monitors social media to prevent school violence. Edmond schools isn't a subscriber, but like Abdelkader, district officials are glad the situation was handled.

"He learned his lesson," Abdelkader said.

"I think it's the age we live in... this case we're very grateful they contacted us," Parks-Schlepp said.

The charge presented to the juvenile district attorney's office is "threatening an act of violence."

Edmond schools is not currently subscribing, but officials said it's something the school board may consider at the next meeting.