The first threat was fireworks, the second is voicemails

Police investigate Renton school threats

Three threatening messages left at the Risdon Middle School office over the weekend of Jan. 31 to Feb. 2 has caused Newcastle Police Department to ask the public for help identifying the caller.

While under investigation, officers will remain at Risdon and other schools in the area, out of “an overabundance of caution for the safety of the students and faculty.”

Risdon, part of Renton School District and located in the city of Newcastle, received three voicemails over the weekend. All were less than 10 seconds in length. The caller said people should not come to school Monday, Feb. 3, and in one voicemail referenced “shooting up the place.”

All messages sounded like the same person and the voice sounded like that of a teenager. No specific faculty or students were mentioned according to Newcastle police.

Police in Newcastle have special training to respond to acts of violence at schools and workplaces, and have specialized equipment for these types of instances.

“(Newcastle police) takes this and all types of threats very seriously and we are diligently working in partnership with Renton School District to identify the suspect,” the release states. Those with information are asked to call 206-296-3311.

If identified, the person(s) will face felony charges. Earlier last week, Renton schools faced a similar threat to Hazen High School, and the student involved in the separate case now faces charges.

On Jan. 28, Renton Police Department officers responded to Hazen for reports of shots fired. While students attempted to leave the school, several suffered minor injuries, including a possible fractured hand. The sound turned out to be fireworks in the school.

The student involved in the fireworks was identified as a 16-year-old student. Following the firework incident, the student posted a video of a “random subject firing an automatic rifle” and in their caption made threatening comments that cause safety concerns for parents, students and district staff, according to Renton police.

He is now facing possible criminal charges, including felony harassment, reckless endangerment, malicious mischief and possession of fireworks within Renton city limits, according to police.

Additional security staff was also stationed around Hazen following the incident, and counselors are available for students who witnessed the firework event. Any additional information on the case can be offered to Hazen School Resource Officer at rmcgruder@rentonwa.gov, reference case #20-1123.

More in News

Courtesy of Renton School District.
Under-enrollment in Renton may lead to budget, staff cuts

RSD asking for feedback on how to cut its spending due to impending losses

Homeless man shot, killed at encampment

Renton Police are asking for information or witnesses

Courtesy of Renton Schools. Through a mentor program between local students and car dealerships, involving Renton School District Career Technical Education (CTE) worksite learning coordinators, nonprofit Mentor Washington and Communities in Schools Renton-Tukwila, students are getting both careers and a friendly hand on stepping into the adulthood. Pictured: First mentee in the program Nick Romo, who has gone on to continue his career after the program and is nearly a master technician, in a video about the program.
Dealing kids a better future

Local car dealerships mentor Renton students for future careers

Courtesy of City of Renton. The Cedar River Trail experienced a significant undermining, and much of the bank was gone after flooding over the weekend, some of it just feet away from the paved trail.
River flooding pushes Renton to the limits

Heavy rains and rising waters could cost Renton millions

Courtesy of City of Renton. Site area for the Park Avenue North extension, a project from the city and SECO development that creates a second access point for Southport.
SECO expands its reach

Two new land acquisitions will expand Southport

Federal Way resident Mi’Chance Dunlap-Gittens, 17, died Jan. 27, 2017. Courtesy photo
Law enforcement challenges report on sting operation that killed Federal Way teen

King County Office of Law Enforcement Oversight’s findings rattle Sheriff’s Office, police union.

Unstable housing? Apply for Section 8

Applications open in February for housing vouchers

In 2018, the city of Seattle approved and then repealed a head tax within a month. It would have levied a $275 per employee tax on businesses grossing more than $20 million annually. Sound Publishing file photo
County head tax bill passes committee

Bill would let King County levy a tax on businesses to fund housing and address homelessness.

Gov. Jay Inslee signs the first bill of the 2020 legislative session into law. On the right stands the bill’s primary sponsor, Sen. Jamie Pedersen, D-Seattle, who is wearing a red tie. Photo by Cameron Sheppard, WNPA News Service
Gov. Inslee signs tax bill to help fund higher education

Law shifts a portion of the tax burden to large tech companies.

Most Read