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De Soto student taken into custody after social media post about gun causes school lockdown
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De Soto student taken into custody after social media post about gun causes school lockdown

The De Soto School District implemented a preventative lockdown at its schools and a student was taken into custody, Monday morning, Dec. 9, after authorities say they received information about a possible safety threat.

The Vernon County Sheriff’s Office was notified at about 7 a.m. of a social media post from a 17-year-old male student, which included a possible threat and picture of a firearm.

A deputy was able to locate the student at his home prior to him going to school, and the student was taken into custody without incident. The student appeared in Vernon County Circuit Court, where he was ordered not to possess firearms and not to contact De Soto Area Schools.

According to a letter written by Linzi Gronning, De Soto Middle School/High School principal and superintendent, and sent to parents and guardians, the preventative lockdown was lifted at 8:38 a.m.

“The District took action to secure students in a safe location at all three buildings,” Gronning wrote. “Buses near elementary schools were re-routed to Prairie View and Stoddard elementary school buildings, and elementary, middle and high school students were provided with ‘shelter in place.’ Other buses that were not near elementary schools picked up students, and then buses were held on roadways. There were some students not picked up due to icy roads.

“Students who arrived at De Soto Middle/High School either by bus, car, or walking were taken into the school building to ‘shelter in place’ in a secure area. Some students who arrived and who were accompanied by a parent/guardian left with their parent/guardian. Parents/guardians were notified if their child could not be picked up due to road conditions.”

Parents and guardians who wished to pick up their child at school were welcome to do so.

When the email from the district was sent Monday morning, it was noted that the middle school/high school band and choir concert would proceed as scheduled. The concert ended up being rescheduled to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 17, because of the weather. All evening activities were canceled.

Angela Cina can be reached at angie.cina@lee.net.

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Vernon County Broadcaster editor

Angie Cina is editor of the Vernon County Broadcaster. Contact her at 608-637-5616.

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