Oceana County woman arrested for making bomb threat at Hesperia school

August 29, 2023

Oceana County woman arrested for making bomb threat at Hesperia school

HESPERIA — A 21-year-old Oceana County woman was arrested by the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office for a felony of false report/threat of terrorism after allegedly making a bomb threat via a social media post to Hesperia Community Schools.

The woman, who is being prosecuted in Newaygo County, faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted. She is a former Hesperia student, according to the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office. 

“Bomb Threat Arrest: On Saturday Aug 26, 2023, the Hesperia school district and sheriff’s office were made aware of a social media post making a threat to the Hesperia public school district,” states a post on the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office Facebook page Tuesday, Aug. 29. “That evening, members of the sheriff’s office and Michigan State Police K-9 unit searched the school and deemed the school safe.

“Det./Sgt. (Dylan) Wimmer opened an investigation into the matter, and determined the post came from a former student who lives in Oceana County.

“On Tuesday Aug. 29, the sheriff’s office obtained an arrest warrant for false report/threat of terrorism, which is a 20-year felony. The 21-year-old female was taken into custody and transported to the Newaygo County Jail. She is awaiting arraignment in (Newaygo County’s) 78th District Court.”

Hesperia Community Schools Superintendent Bryan Mey posted the following on the school’s Facebook page Monday, Aug. 27:

“Good afternoon families,

Over the past 24 hours, we became aware of a social media post that comes from an account that appears to be from an individual with a history of making false and in some cases, outlandish threats. The threat directed at our district is identical to ones sent to the Michigan State Police and the Wesco corporate offices. Only the name of the threatened group has been changed.

“Whenever a threat is made, regardless of how outlandish it may seem, we work closely with law enforcement to ensure that it is non credible. In this case, it also provided the district and law enforcement an opportunity to practice our safety protocols and communication strategies.

“Special thanks to the Michigan State Police K-9 unit and the Newaygo County Sheriff”s Office. They took the time this weekend to walk through our buildings; engage the safety procedures and protocols; and reassure us that the threat was not credible. We appreciate our ongoing collaboration with them and the competent services that they provide to our community and our county.

“While this post appears to have come from someone outside of the school system who is well known to law enforcement for making non credible threats, we appreciate the time that a community member took to notify us. In today’s world, if a threatening statement occurs, it is better to inform us so that we can follow the safety protocols. As they say in the airport, ‘If you see something, please say something.’

“We would ask that regardless of how outlandish they may be, that you not share or further discuss social media posts that make threats to the district or other organizations. We know that when these discussions occur, copy-cat behaviors tend to arise. Let’s focus on the positive things that are happening and that will be coming in our district and in our community.

“As we start our school year, Hesperia Community Schools remains committed to student safety and security as our priority. We work closely with law enforcement and other agencies to maintain the safest environment possible for our students. Our school resource officer is on campus full time and is a Newaygo County sheriff’s deputy. We have a state-of-the-art lockdown system and security protocols that reflect industry best practices.

“As always, if you have questions regarding the start of school, please do not hesitate to contact your building principal. If you have questions regarding our district, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Thank you for your partnership with us. We are looking forward to a great school year!

Sincerely,

Bryan D. Mey

Superintendent”

The Village of Hesperia is located in both Oceana and Newaygo counties, and the school campus is on the Newaygo County side.

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