How do police determine a credible threat at a school

Posted at 11:11 AM, Apr 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-04-13 13:11:48-04

BOZEMAN – There have been threats made in schools in local communities over the last few weeks. 

Law enforcement agencies determined these threats as credible but what exactly does that mean.

Just days apart school was canceled and let out early in the Belgrade school district and the Manhattan school district.

The responding officers the schools determined that these threats were credible.

"A couple of the prongs that we look at are is there intent to do some harm and is there the ability to do some harm," said Captain Andy Knight, with the Bozeman Police Department.

There are cyber threats as well as threats that come from students and police take both with extreme caution.

"If there is a credible threat within the school, like for a student. What we would look at is there credibility, is there intent and ability or is this just a student that’s having a bad day," said Knight.

The relationship between local law enforcement and the school district also plays a role.

"We have a very close relationship with our school district here. They will let us know right away if there is a threat,” said Knight.

Working with the district faculty, law enforcement can better determine the credibility of a threat and what type of action needs to be taken.

For parents, the best way to know what to do if a school threat is credible is to subscribe to your districts emergency notification system.