Perryville High School, Perry Co. Middle School resume classes after reported threat

Police in Perryville say they have good idea of who is making threating calls to the Perry County school district, which shut down the school today
Published: Jan. 11, 2023 at 8:49 AM CST|Updated: Jan. 13, 2023 at 6:30 PM CST
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PERRY COUNTY, Mo. (KFVS) - Classes at the Perryville High School and Perry County Middle School resumed after police received a call reporting a possible threat.

Both buildings were searched and are now secure.

According to Perryville police, they received a phone call around 6:15 a.m. from a male claiming to be a Perryville High School student. He told them a student was threatening to “place an incendiary device” at the school on Wednesday.

School officials were immediately notified, and officers were dispatched to search the building.

Police say no weapons, nor explosives were found.

During the investigation, police say they learned the caller used a voice over internet service to change the phone number.

They say they are currently trying to identify the company used for the phone number so they can try to subpoena records.

In addition, names that were given of both the caller and suspect were not students at Perryville High School.

The department is working with the school district to try to identify a suspect.

“We take the safety of our students seriously and will respond to all threats against them and our schools,” Police Chief Direk Hunt said in a news release. “If the suspect is identified, we will work with the Prosecuting Attorney to pursue charges for making a Terroristic Threat and any other applicable charges.”

“We always encourage citizens to ‘Say something if they see something.’ However, the opposite side of the coin is those individuals that try and incite fear among the community by calling in a false report. These cases need to be pursued to the fullest extent of the law,” he added.

The Perry County Sheriff’s Office also responded to the campus. Perry County Sheriff Jason Klaus said plans are being made for school to resume for the day.

According to a release from the school district, police ordered the evacuation of students and staff at Perryville High School and Perry County Middle School.

They said students were moved safely to pre-planned locations.

Other buildings on the school district campus were placed on precautionary lockout.

The school district said police finished the search around 9:15 a.m.

They said students are safe and are being moved back to classrooms to continue their day.

District 32 Superintendent Andrew Comstock thanked local law enforcement for their swift response.

“We are providing every support that our police need to identify any person who makes any threat against our school, students, or staff,” he said.

The school district urged anyone, parents; students or community members, with information to contact the Perryville Police Department at 573-547-4546.