Nevada high, middle schools evacuated after emailed threat

By Austin Cannon, staff writer [email protected] Nevada High School and Middle School students were evacuated Monday after an emailed threat was received.

Authorities did not specify what the nature of the threat was, but according to Nevada Fire Chief Ray Reynolds the schools were evacuated out of an abundance of caution. It was later determined the email came from an overseas account, according to a news release from the Nevada Police Department.

The Nevada Public Safety Department said administrators at Nevada High School received a threat of violence toward students and staff at the school around 2 p.m.

High School students were taken to Memorial Lutheran Church in Nevada. Middle School students were taken to the GFS building, where a Nevada police vehicle was parked outside as parents gathered to pick up their children. Parents were being allowed into the building in groups of 10, and no backpacks were being allowed into the building.

One father, Joe Steffes, said he was at work when he received a text message from the school around 2:15 p.m. notifying him of the threat.

Police said school officials will notify students and parents when personal belongings can be retrieved from the high school.

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“(I was thinking) the same thing everyone was thinking, ‘Oh my God this is scary. Are my kids okay?’” Steffes said.

Steffes said he was able to pick up his two children — both in high school — from Memorial Lutheran Church, which he said was extremely busy. According to Steffes, as of 3 p.m. the church was still filled with plenty of students, who were waiting to be picked up, and that students were not being allowed to collect their cars and other belongings from the high school. Steffes said that he is just glad he was able to reunite with his kids as soon as he did.

Students at a Nevada school were forced to evacuate Monday after the school was threatened via email.

Nora Anderson, 17 and a senior, said she was in government class studying immigration policy, when the announcement came over the intercom that students were to go to the safe locations.

She said she walked the three to four blocks to the church with a group of friends. While some students were talking about possible reasons for the evacuation, it wasn’t until they got to the church that they learned it was an emailed threat, Anderson said.

Anderson said at first she thought maybe part of the building had flooded because they had shut down water in part of the building. She got more nervous when she saw police cars driving by.

“There were police officers with guns and stuff, too,” she said.

She said students had to leave their backpacks outside to be searched and were not immediately allowed to return to the school to get their cars. Students were not allowed to leave without a parent. She said officials indicated students would get a text message when it was OK to return to collect their things.

Anderson said her government class was about to end when the evacuation was ordered. She was to go to band, next, she said.

“It was OK to get out, but not a good situation because of how it happened,” Anderson said.

Seventh grader Brooklyn Hapes was in gym class roller skating when the students were told to evacuate. She also had to leave behind her backpack and cellphone, so messages from her mother went unanswered.

“Some people were crying, and that started to scare me,” she said.

Her mom, Stacey Williams, waited about 90 minutes to pick her up. She first thought that the evacuation was a drill of some kind before realizing it wasn’t.

“It was terrifying, especially with all the stuff going on it the world with schools.”

All evening activities and events were cancelled, but classes were expected to resume on normal schedule Tuesday.

Tribune reporter Grayson Schmidt and Editor Michael Crumb contributed to this story.

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Nevada high school and middle school were evacuated Monday afternoon after a threat was emailed to administrators from an overseas account, police said. 

Administrators at Nevada High School received the threat at about 2 p.m., which police said indicated a threat of violence toward students and staff Monday afternoon. The campus was evacuated and school officials contacted police and notified parents. 

In a statement, city officials said their preliminary investigation indicated the emailed threat came from an overseas account. The high school and middle school remained on lockdown pending further investigation

Parents were told they could pick up their children at evacuation locations. In a statement on Facebook, the school district said games and practices scheduled for Monday were canceled.

The schools will notify students and parents when personal belongings can be retrieved. Classes are expected to resume Tuesday. 

Officials with the police department and the school district could not immediately be reached by phone for further information. 

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