KANSAS CITY, Mo. - The halls felt heavy at Raymore-Peculiar High School Thursday after student Daren Davis was arrested for comments he made on social media about possible violence at the school.
"Kind of ominous and kind of hanging over everyone's head," junior Jason Duewel said of the mood at school.
Frightening posts surfaced this week saying things like "RayPec is about to be the new Columbine.” One student's tweets said what school district officials confirmed, about 600 students didn't come to school. The absences come even though officials told parents there was no credible threat, only posts on social media.
"Consequently, this is exactly what is supposed to happen," John Douglass said.
He just left his job as a police chief to be the head of security at the Shawnee Mission School District. He said Ray-Pec's quick response shows a much-needed change in our culture that no threat can go unnoticed, no matter who says it.
It was a lesson learned by a Dutch teen when she tweeted a terrorist threat to American Airlines. Joking or not, she was later arrested.
An Oak Grove student was suspended for three days in 2010 after comments she made on Facebook.
These are all lessons hitting home at Ray-Pec High School.
"Life is too short for posting stuff like that," Duewel said.
The district superintendent spoke about the danger of social media posts Thursday morning.
"They need to be aware of the serious consequences of things they say on social media," Dr. Kari Morees said.
School officials point to parents as their lifeline.
"You are responsible to have the judgment that they don't have," Douglass said.