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Sunday, December 16 News

Text of full release from Westport PD on Staples threats incident

From the Westport Police Department:

(Westport, CT) This morning at approximately 9:00am, the Westport Police Department was contacted by Staples High School officials and advised a juvenile male student was overheard making threats to shoot a teacher. The student who overheard this statement reported it to school officials this morning. Officers and detectives responded to Staples High School where the male student was already being interviewed by school administration. Based on the information learned by school administrators, it was confirmed the student did have thoughts of executing a mass shooting at the high school. At this time, we continue to investigate whether these thoughts developed into a plan. Our detectives were able to establish that there were firearms in the student's home. The firearms belong to the student's father and were reportedly locked in a safe. However, officers could not confirm whether all the firearms were accounted for.

Out of an abundance of caution, Staples High School was first directed to shelter in place while buses were assembled for dismissal at approximately 1:15 p.m. Officers from surrounding towns assisted Westport officers at Staples High School as the school was released on early dismissal. Also as a precaution, officers were posted at all other schools in town to assist, although no other schools dismissed early.

The suspect is in custody at this time. His family is cooperating fully with the investigation and search warrants were executed at his residence. The Westport Police Department will conduct a search of the entire school facility this afternoon to confirm the school is safe for a return tomorrow morning.

The Westport Police Department would like to thank the Police Departments of Norwalk, Fairfield and Stamford as well as the Connecticut State Police for their assistance. Most importantly, we would like to express our gratitude to the student who reported his concerns to school officials and prevented a potential tragedy.

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