12-year-old arrested for prank call to Minnesota schoolNew Prague, MN (WDAY TV) - A 12-year-old boy has been arrested after allegedly making a prank phone call that caused a Minnesota School District to go on lockdown.
By: Kay Cooley, WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY
New Prague, MN (WDAY TV) - A 12-year-old boy has been arrested after allegedly making a prank phone call that caused a Minnesota School District to go on lockdown.
According to local law enforcement, even though the boy is young, he could possibly be sent to juvenile detention.
The call came in around 8 this morning and caused three schools to be locked down in New Prague, a town nearly 50 miles southwest of Minneapolis.
Police say the boy said he needed help because there was a shooter with an AK-47 inside the building, and had already shot people.
Glen Krogman, Fargo: "Just kids probably wanting to get out of school work I suppose."
The call prompted a lockdown followed by student evacuation with parents rushing to the scene.
All because of what police call a prank from someone so young.
Lt. Pat Claus, Deputy Chief of Police: "Unfortunately it's not as uncommon as we'd think."
The latest statistics released by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention estimates that there were about 1.6 million juvenile arrests back in 2010 nationwide.
Out of that total, only 27% were boys and girls under the age of 15.
Bill Bergquist, Clay County Sheriff: "You look at the times, it just seems like our criminals are becoming younger."
Under Minnesota law, no one under 14 can be charged as an adult and anyone younger that 10 is deemed incapable of committing a crime.
In North Dakota those numbers are 14 and 7. So worst case scenario this 12-year-old could go to a juvenile detention center.
Katie Lund, Fargo: "If it's just a joke, give him a good talking to but there's no reason to completely over react and lock the kid up.”
Bergquist: “There's always those people that say well you know, it was just a prank, like all the old bomb scares we used to get, but we really can't take them as a prank because the schools are required to protect the students."
Even in the metro we've seen three school threats within the last year: Freedom Elementary, Agassiz, and NDSU.
Bergquist: "It's become the monster under the bed almost."
And no matter the age of the caller, they're all cause for concern and exhaust thousands of dollars in resources.
Classes should resume tomorrow. This was the second incident for the school district in New Prague this year. Just two months ago another student phoned in a bomb threat. That student was expelled.