IONIA, Mich. - Ionia County law enforcement and school officials are reaching out to parents to help stop the spread of threats being made at schools.
A letter, written on the letterhead of Ionia County Prosecutor Kyle Butler, is being sent to parents and was posted on the Facebook page of Ionia Middle School Wednesday. The letter is signed by Butler, the Ionia County Sheriff, Ionia Department of Public Safety, Belding Police, Portland Police, Lake Odessa Police and all the school superintendents in the county: Ionia, Belding, Portland, Lakewood, Saranac, Pewamo-Westphalia, and Ionia County ISD.
The letter says that there has been a rise in school threats around the country and locally and that they are taken seriously by law enforcement and schools. Therefore, students should know that if they make a threat, they are not viewed as a joke and "will not be tolerated."
Parents are urged to talk to their kids that threats can lead to felony charges that can lead up to 20 years in prison. Also, if not jail time, convictions can lead to other consequences like:
- Losing scholarship opportunities or federal school aid.
- Denial of college admission.
- Denial of entry into the armed forces.
- Requirement to disclose the situation on job applications.