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March 24, 2018

2/26/2018 1:08:00 PM
Student, 17, arrested for threatened shooting at North Branch High School

Local authorities came together late Saturday and Sunday last weekend to address a potential incident police say was serious enough to be treated as a threat to the safety of North Branch Area Public Schools.

North Branch Chief of Police Dan Meyer gave the timeline leading up to the arrest Saturday night (Feb 24) of a 17-year-old, believed to have made threats to use a firearm at North Branch high school.  No date or time was given related to the threat.

The student resides in North Branch,  but attends the Pathways to Change program in Chisago City.  The Pathways facility is not now part of any school campus and is overseen by the St Croix River Education District (SCRED).  The Pathways to Change class is moving to Chisago Lakes Middle School,  when remodeling is completed there to accommodate programs no longer planned to use leased spaces. (District administrative offices were moved to temporary offices in the Scotsdale mall in Lindstrom.)

Chisago Lakes School District officials were involved mainly at the level of providing information and communicating with authorities.  Superintendent Dean Jennissen said there was no perceived danger to a Chisago Lakes District facility.  “Threats are taken very seriously,” Jennissen stated. Chisago Lakes personnel got notice of the investigation and staff responded accordingly, Jennissen added.  “Administrative staff will maintain close contact with North Branch School District and law enforcement throughout this event.”

The North Branch Police learned that verbal threats had been made against North Branch High School Saturday Feb. 24 at approximately 6:40 p.m.
The individual believed to be responsible was taken into custody by about 10:30 p.m. that same night.  Chief Meyer said the suspect did not have a firearm in his possession, nor do police have any information the suspect has immediate access to weapons at this time.

The North Branch School District issued a statement basically directing questions to the police due to this being an active investigation.  The district also would view any student absence as authorized, for Monday this week, if any parents desired to keep their children home.

The North Branch statement concluded saying the district “...is grateful for North Branch police’s prompt and thorough investigation as well as its excellent communication during the situation.”

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WIld Mountain 12-8-13

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