Faculty, students and administrators at Calloway County High School are recovering this week after a bomb scare that sent most of them outside for several hours Tuesday, according to school officials.
David Dowdy, public relations coordinator for the school district, said a note was found on a teacher’s desk while students were changing classrooms at 10:30 a.m.
“The note contained the threat of a bomb set to explode at noon,” Dowdy stated in an official press release after the incident.
The teacher took the note directly to CCHS Principal Brian Wilmurth, who interviewed the students who had been in the class before the bell rang, Dowdy said.
“Mr. Wilmurth encouraged the students to come forward before law enforcement officers became involved, but no one in the group acknowledged writing or even seeing the note,” he said.
Dowdy said when school officials determined the note could not be disregarded as a prank, the Calloway County Sheriff’s Department along with the Kentucky State Police were notified.
School officials immediately sprung into action, evacuating the high school’s 980-student population to the Jack D. Rose Football Stadium behind the school’s parking lot, he said.
“The evacuation was quick, orderly and safe,” Dowdy said.
By noon, KSP troopers had blocked off College Farm Road, which leads to the high school, and cars were being directed to turn around at Murray State’s William “Bill” Cherry Expo Center. No University classes were canceled because of the road block.
A single Calloway County Fire and Rescue engine stood parked in the expo parking lot, while troopers and firemen waited for the arrival of the Tennessee Highway Patrol and its K-9 bomb-sniffing unit.
“Officers conducted a search of the school and did not locate an explosive device,” Dean Patterson, public relations officer for the KSP, said.
The KSP, the Calloway County Sheriff’s Department, the Murray Police Department, the Murray State Police and the Tennessee Highway Patrol K-9 were all involved in the nearly two-hour long search, Patterson said.
Dowdy said throughout the day, offcials kept students in mind.
“The safety of our students was our greatest concern, and after that, their comfort,” he said.