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YATES, STEUBEN COUNTIES   ADVERTISEMENT

Nine-year-old caught in bomb threat

YATES, STEUBEN COUNTIES—After a few calm days, a bomb threat was found at Dundee Central School March 19. A suspicious message that made reference to an explosive device in the school was found in an elementary school bathroom around noon. Early dismissal had begun.
Yates County Sheriff Ron Spike said there were two deputies in the building this morning and everyone had been screened so they knew there was nothing there. Calling the work that followed a good investigation, Spike said a nine-year-old girl was identified and later admitted writing the threat. Spike said she would be charged with juvenile delinquency. She was released to her parents and will have to appear in Yates County Family Court. Spike said, “I do not see any connection with the other threats in Dundee.” He commended members of his department for good investigating. State Police and Wayne County Sheriff’s office K-9 Unit also assisted in Dundee. More than 400 parents attended a meeting in Dundee March 8 to discuss the problem.
Twelve miles away in Penn Yan, a threat was found in the high school two hours earlier, making it the fifth threat in the Penn Yan District in less than two weeks.
The recent bomb threats in the Penn Yan Central School District were a topic of discussion at the March 17 meeting of the district board of education. Superintendent of Schools Ann Orman said, “In the past three days, we’ve had some issues. Staff, parents, students and the community; I can’t give enough credit to everyone who has done things to help move smoothly and safely. It has been a real learning experience and we will continue to work through it.” Orman said at one point students were being fed “all over the district.”
In addition to the students’ and staff’s days being disrupted, construction workers at the site of the project now going on at the Academy have also been forced to evacuate that building at times. A magnetometer is in place at the entrance and staff members are checking backpacks. Orman said the students have been very cooperative with this practice. She praised staff for their full assistance with whatever needed to be done.
During the school board meeting, audience member Jeff Bray asked, “If at any point will it be made public, not names, but what the ramifications are?” Orman said, “That is difficult to answer now because the investigation is still going on. It depends on the age of the person. We will let all the students know what the consequences are.” During the discussion, Orman said students are angry about the threats.
She said, “A lot of things have been impacted. No drill could prepare you for this.” On March 19 another bomb threat was found in the Academy, triggering another evacuation that disrupted the day for more than two hours.
After the latest threats, Spike said, “This is causing disruption and anxiety.”
Wednesday two notes were found at Hammondsport Central School. No explosives were found. Friday, a 17-year-old Hammondsport student, Corey Dixon, was charged with first degree falsely reporting an incident. This is a class D felony punishable by up to seven years in state prison. Dixon was arraigned in Urbana Town Court and released on his own recognizance.
 





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