Threat prompts evacuation of Glenville-Emmons High

Published 9:03 am Friday, January 23, 2009

A threatening message concerning a bomb, found scrawled on a restroom stall, prompted officials to evacuate Glenville-Emmons High School on Thursday afternoon.

Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office investigator Scott Golbuff said the call from the school district superintendent came at 1:48 p.m.

Glenville-Emmons School District Superintendent Mark Roubinek said the high school’s 185 students were bused across town to Glenville-Emmons Elementary School.

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He said the evacuation went orderly.

“The kids did a very nice job. We take things very seriously and need to follow through on stuff and try to keep everyone safe,” Roubinek said.

Deputies from the Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office and volunteer firefighters from the Glenville Fire Department responded to the school, Golbuff said. He said all deputies available were sent to the school. The deputies and firefighters searched the school and found no suspicious devices.

The all-clear signal was given around 3 p.m., Golbuff said. He said the message mentioned a bombing.

Roubinek said students were allowed to retrieve their belongings and go home. He said school officials do not know who wrote the message but authorities are investigating.

One person’s actions had repercussions throughout the county.

Golbuff said deputies working on cases throughout the county were pulled away. For instance, he was going to deal with a reported drunk in Hollandale and another deputy was working on the much-publicized elder-abuse case. He listed other matters that had to be dropped.

The volunteer firefighters had to leave their jobs. The high school teachers were unable to teach afternoon lessons and the students were denied the time to learn them. The elementary students had to make room in the gymnasium for the high school students.

“It’s very disruptive,” he said. “Kids don’t realize how much of a problem it can be.”

A terroristic threat at a school is a top-priority call. Deputies speeding down the highways to get to the school can be dangerous for the deputies and for regular drivers, Golbuff said. He said of course they have no issue with doing their normal jobs, but “it’s a huge thing, more than a person might realize.”

About Tim Engstrom

Tim Engstrom is the editor of the Albert Lea Tribune. He resides in Albert Lea with his wife, two sons and dog.

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