BYHALIA, MS (WMC) - A Byhalia Middle School student has been arrested for making threats toward students and staff.
The student was in court today on unrelated charges when he was arrested.
As a result of the social media threats, Byhalia Schools told parents to send their students to school without backpacks Tuesday.
The school said it does not take the threats lightly.
Extra law enforcement was on hand at each school in the district Tuesday.
The district released the following statement regarding the threats:
The student has been charged with multiple counts of cyberstalking.
After the online threats were discovered, school officials jumped into action, trying to put parents at ease.
District officials beefed up security at all three Byhalia schools and told parents they didn't have to send their kids to school, if they didn't feel comfortable.
The student parking lot at Byhalia High School sat empty Tuesday after the social media threat surfaced.
“I don't see why they would threaten to shoot up the school because really it's just a whole lot of innocent people,” said Byhalia High School freshman Krista March. “We didn't do anything."
Krista stopped by briefly to grab something out of her locker but like most of her classmates stayed home.
"I didn't know what was going to happen,” Krista said.
Her father Arthur Brandon says he didn't let either of his kids go to school because he worried about their safety.
"It's pretty sad...It's just ridiculous this day and time that these children are acting like this,” Arthur said. “There's no sense in it."
District leaders say normal activities will return Wednesday, but security will remain visible for the rest of the week.
They say the students behind the post will be punished according to district policy.
Parents say that punishment should match the seriousness of the crime.
"They’re talking about taking people’s lives... that’s not OK,” Arthur said.