Hamblen County School officials say both East and West high schools went into a soft lockdown Wednesday morning due to an East High student alleging that she overheard another student say they had a gun.
The student in question then took a bus from East to West for his first period class, which necessitated both schools going into lockdown.
“The reliability of the allegation is questionable but we have taken precautions while we investigate,” school officials said. “All students and staff are safe.”
The Morristown Police Department confirmed the investigation and said that a threat had not been identified.
The soft lockdowns ended shortly before 10 a.m.
Brantley Smith, assistant superintendent of Hamblen County Schools, said all precautions were taken while the investigation was conducted. All students involved were questioned by authorities before normal activity resumed.
The incident is unrelated to a disorderly conduct arrest made at the East end Walmart last night after a 22-year-old man made a “joking” comment while trying to buy ammunition.
The man, Logan Reece, Haun Drive, was with two friends attempting to buy ammo when he “uttered some remarks about violence towards East High School,” according to reports.
An MPD spokesperson said officials believe the threat was not credible and the comments were an ill-advised attempt to make a joke.
“He told (investigators) it was a stupid mistake,” Chief Deputy Michelle Jones said.
That spokesperson said, however, that all remarks of that nature should be taken seriously and thanked Walmart officials for reporting the remarks.
Dr. Jeff Perry, superintendent of Hamblen County Schools, issued a statement through social media Tuesday night.
“We have determined that those comments were not a viable threat to any student or to the school,” he said Tuesday night. “There is no reason to be concerned about students safety and we will proceed with a normal day.”