Parents on Alert after Threatening Message Found in Elementary School

RICE TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- A threatening message left in an elementary school bathroom on Wednesday in Luzerne County has parents on high alert.

Now, police are trying to figure out who might be responsible.

Police in Rice Township are using surveillance video to narrow down who could have written the threatening message at Rice Elementary.

Some parents were even inside the school with their kids while it was on lockdown.

Parent Shelley Rodgers told Newswatch 16 what started out as a spring party with parents, students, and teachers at Rice Elementary School turned into a serious situation.

Rodgers said of the incident, “All of a sudden we heard over the loudspeaker, ‘restrictive movement,’ and we said, ‘what!’”

Parents and their children were on lockdown inside the elementary school after a threatening message was found on the bathroom wall.

Police swept the school with a bomb-sniffing K-9 and determined it was safe for everyone to leave.

Rodgers said it was a lot on her kids because they are so young.

“Last night, they got a little upset again, and then again this morning, they were a little nervous but we reassured them that police will be there to make sure things are safe,” Rodgers said.,

The chief of the Rice Township Police Department tells Newswatch 16 that typically one officer stops by the school every day, but on Friday four officers came in the morning to make students feel safer.

“I'm glad that they acted so quickly. They took it seriously. I think kids nowadays do things jokingly and there's always that one time it might not be a joke,” Tara Jackson of Mountain Top said.

Jackson said she has a young son who would be in the Crestwood School District when he is older.

She said this whole incident has her re-thinking what she’ll do about his schooling.

“It makes me kind of want to homeschool my child because you know for the future. People are seeing what it's like now, but what's it going to be like in the future,” Jackson asked.

Police are working with the district attorney’s office as they investigate this case.