Superintendent talks school threats: ‘What you say matters’

Superintendent Talks School Threat - clipped version

PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Authorities are investigating separate threats involving two Pine Belt schools that happened over the weekend.

On Monday, the Lamar County School District announced the arrest of Xadrien Watson, who was charged with two counts of violating the Mississippi Terroristic Threats Law after making threats to a school in Lamar County on social media.

The district posted a press release reassuring parents and staff the threats are being taken seriously.

“I need parents to know that I put every detail in there that I could put in there at the time. I know they want all the details,” said Lamar County Superintendent Tess Smith. “I get it. I hope they understand that I gave them all the details that I give permission to give out. So, if they would be patient with us on that.”

Watson’s bond was set at $50,000 for each charge on Monday.

Smith wants to encourage parents to have conversations with their children about the seriousness of this situation.

“Even the young ones. Talk about what you say matters and things must be taken seriously,” said Smith. “Even if you say it in jest, if it’s a threat, it will not be taken as a joke. We just can’t. We don’t live in that world anymore.”

This is the second time for a threat to be made toward the Lamar County School District.

A juvenile is also in custody after a threat was made to another student at Laurel High School on social media.

Laurel Police Chief Tommy Cox said the department was made aware of the threat on Sunday night.

Cox said a male high school student made a threat to shoot another student at the high school.

That student was arrested and placed in Jones County Juvenile Detention.

The police department released a statement saying, “There is no current threat to any students at LHS. LPD and LHS take these types of threats very seriously and caution parents to educate their children as to the consequences of the threats.”

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