Homer Alaska - Schools

Story last updated at 4:30 PM on Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Threat or no threat, drills help students prepare

By McKibben Jackinsky
Staff Writer

After being told Jan. 3 that an individual had threatened the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, Homer Chief of Police Mark Robl directed Sgt. Lary Kuhns to notify Steve Atwater, KPBSD superintendent.

"The threat was fairly specific," said Robl. "This person threatened to hurt students at a school somewhere."

Megan Peters, information officer for the Alaska Department of Public Safety, said the individual reported to have made the threat was at the Wildwood Correctional Center in Kenai at the time. Because that is a state-owned facility, the incident came under the department's jurisdiction, said Peters.

Trooper investigation showed that the comment alleged to be a threat was of the non-criminal variety.

"No charges were filed," said Peters. "We determined there were no criminal ramifications. We determined it was a non-criminal matter."

The person allegedly making the threat "had been in Homer in the past," according to Robl.

He declined to say how he heard about the threat, but did say the individual alleged to have made the threatening remarks was in Wildwood for reasons unrelated to the threat and has since been moved to Anchorage.

"The reason he was moved was in conjunction with the case he was incarcerated on," said Robl.

The school district took advantage of the incident to hold Level II Lockdown and "Hit the Deck" drills as outlined in the KPBSD Emergency Action Plan.

Atwater assured the public that "at no time were our schools in immediate danger by the individual who made the alleged threat. I am pleased with the good response by our schools when practicing a lock down drill and by the close co-operation with the four city police departments (Homer, Soldotna, Kenai and Seward) and the Alaska State Troopers."

McKibben Jackinsky can be reached at mckibben.jackinsky@homernews.com.