Connect with us

Local News

Following a school threat investigation, Roanoke Police issues a statement



Roanoke, Virginia – The week was hectic for the Roanoke Police. The district was closed for days due to credible threats to the school.

“We’re thankful that the way that Snapchat and the internet happens is they leave a digital fingerprint for us to follow. We just had to follow it,” said Sgt. William Drake from the Roanoke Police Department.

First, according to him, they were able to identify 35-year-old Stephen Johnson using his fingerprint, whose email address was connected to the Snapchat group where the threats were posted.

“I’ll be honest, we rushed it a little bit to make sure that we could find the data that Mr. Caldwell needed,” said Drake.

Following Johnson’s arrest by the police, more threats were received.

“Copycatting is very common when we get threats against a school,” said Drake. “But they continued. And they were different.”

Drake claimed that the police did not receive prompt answers until they requested assistance from the FBI. Two tablets, discovered at the residence of a 15-year-old Patrick Henry High School student, were the target of the threats that they managed to trace.

After being taken into custody, the kid was accused with two felonies for threatening schools.
There is a connection between the teen and Johnson, according to Roanoke Police Capt. Adam Puckett.

“We do know that there is a connection with Mr. Johnson and the juvenile. We are determining exactly what that connection is, but we know beyond a doubt that there is a connection between the two of them,” said Puckett.

Although neither the teen’s nor Johnson’s residence contained any guns, authorities think Johnson had access to them.

“We believe Mr. Johnson had access to weapons, but he did not have them at the time of arrest,” said Puckett.

He continued by saying he didn’t think the department overspent money or made the incorrect arrest.

“We’re going to put every resource we have available when there’s a threat like this to our schools,” said Puckett.

Police have described the probe as a learning experience, stating that they followed protocol.

“The lesson that we’ve learned from this is we get one of these in the future, my first call is going to be to the FBI to send someone over here to help us,” said Drake.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *