A Thursday of threats at Idaho schools

Five threats of school violence, within the span of an hour.

That was the tally from Thursday, across southern Idaho. The rash of threats, all unsubstantiated, leaves law enforcement officers looking for suspects and testing out theories.

According to an Idaho Statesman article Friday, officers are wondering if the calls were made by students looking to get out of ISAT exams that day, copycat crimes — or an orchestrated attempt to distract law enforcement agencies.

That latter notion “has kind of been at the forefront of all of our minds for a very long time,” Caldwell Police Chief Chris Allgood told the Statesman. “Today was a surprise, but when it came, we were ready to respond.”

The threats were phoned into Caldwell, Boise and Kuna high schools; Skyview High School in Nampa; and Twin Falls Christian Academy. Threats were also made to three Meridian retailers.

The threats came as a governor’s task force is reviewing Idaho school safety measures — a response to the mass slayings at a Newtown, Conn., elementary school in December.

For more reading, here are links to the Idaho Press-Tribune’s coverage — and, from the Twin Falls Times-News’ Dan Warner, an interesting Storify treatment of the day’s events.