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Bishop Miege High School officials, police respond to social media threats involving students

Bishop Miege
Posted at 8:10 AM, Jan 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-28 10:51:46-05

UPDATE, SATURDAY | Only one student was found responsible for the threatening language and the students was permanently removed from Bishop Miege High School, according to a statement from Roeland Park Police Chief John Morris.

Morris also said there is no evidence a shooting was going to occur and recommended Bishop Miege to set normal safety standards.

"We will continue to support Bishop Miege High School and the KCMOPD as needed," Morris said. "Students' safety and well-being are and will remain the top priority now and always.”

ORIGINAL STORY, TUESDAY | School officials from Bishop Miege High School in Roeland Park responded to social media threats involving students on Monday night.

A message sent to parents from Bishop Miege, a private Catholic school, described the threats as "alarming" and containing "inappropriate language and a threatening message."

The letter to parents said Roeland Park police were notified of the threats and took action. Police have maintained a presence Tuesday at the high school with five extra officers on hand, Roeland Park Police Chief John Morris said.

Several students were exchanging photos on Snapchat. Morris said three or four took some of the photos and added antisemitic and anti-Black remarks, including a swastika and multiple racist terms.

At least one message also included a threat to bring a gun to school, according to copies of some images obtained by KSHB 41.

The students involved in the threats were not allowed to attend school Tuesday. Morris says it is possible that one or more students involved is permanently removed from the school.

Several Bishop Miege parents say they are not sending their children to school Tuesday in light of the threats.

"The safety and concern of our students is our top priority," the letter from Bishop Miege said. "As we get more information we will keep you informed."

Roeland Park police are working with Kansas City, Missouri, police on the case, as the threats appear to have been made in KCMO, but it's unclear what, if any charges, could result from the messages.

Morris did not know what the security plan would be for the rest of the school week.

SevenDays, a local group that promotes kindness, released a statement on the incident.

Here is part of that statement:

"SevenDays® is about teaching kindness — and with the events of the last several days in our own community— we clearly have a lot of work left to do."

"First, vandalism — including both racial and antisemitic slurs — was discovered at a southern Overland Park high school on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 16. Now the same kind of hateful messaging has taken place at Bishop Miege High School, a Catholic educational institution in Roeland Park."

"Law enforcement authorities along with school officials are hard at work to find who committed these hurtful and damaging acts. We support their efforts to find the perpetrators. What those perpetrators need most is education to understand why their words and deeds are so destructive and how they can make change in a positive way."

"Such hateful acts have no place in a world that should be built on kindness and inclusion, as King himself taught."