More letters, still no writer
Published 12:54 am Wednesday, March 15, 2006
By By ANDY HAMILTON / Niles Daily Star
BUCHANAN - Two more threatening notes have been found in Buchanan High School, according to a letter from Principal Rick Gregg.
Three letters from Gregg addressed to parents or caregivers regarding the series of events at the high school can be found at www.buchananschools.com.
The letter from Gregg dated Monday, March 13, states the most recent notes found on Monday were immediately turned over to Buchanan Chief of Police Bill Marx, who was already present in the high school.
Gregg's letter also stated the notes “were a repetition of last week's letter containing no new information to help with the investigation.”
Gregg also addressed the safety of the school in his response.
The principal also said the award money for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the responsible party has been doubled to $1,000.
The March 13 notification was the third letter addressed to parents concerning the threatening notes.
The first letter dated Tuesday, March 7, is also addressed to parents, or caregivers, and is a notification of the original incident that took place on the same day.
In the letter, Gregg said the intention of the notes could not necessarily be to threaten other students.
Gregg's letter also stated “violence in schools is at the lowest level since 1992.”
The second letter from Gregg is dated Friday, March 10 and is a statement read to students and staff during morning video announcements.
Gregg stated in the letter he has heard some “surprising rumors” circulating among parents and students.
The rumors are not making it any easier for some parents, either. Rhonda Rauen is the mother of Arron Sater, a sophomore at Buchanan allegedly named on the lists. Rauen said she was one member of a group of parents that went to the high school Tuesday morning in search of answers.
Rauen said the group met with Gregg and Marx at the school for about two hours. However, the entire time was not spent discussing the issue as Gregg collapsed during the meeting and an ambulance had to be called.
Rauen said the parents were notified of some of the safety precautions the school and police are taking. For example, students must place their coats and backpacks in their lockers immediately upon entering the school and are also not allowed to carry them around between classes, Rauen said.
Second, Rauen said teachers have been instructed to lock the classroom doors while their class is in session.
Finally, Rauen said students are not allowed to leave class while a lunch period is in session.
The parents were told the school will continue to have a “police presence,” Rauen said, and everyone in the group was given Marx's business card to contact him if needed, she added.
As far as her feelings toward the issue, Rauen said she was both angry and concerned. “It's not fair that I've spent the last week or so worrying about this,” Rauen said.
Rauen added she thought her son and the other students allegedly on the list were handling the situation quite well.
Rauen also said the group of parents was told that school officials are trying to plan another meeting for Thursday evening. But, as of Wednesday morning Rauen said she had not been contacted.