Follow the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
Tweets from the WDRB Newsroom, Reporters and Anchors.More >>
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Police officers are keeping a close eye on Bullitt County schools today after an 18-year-old is accused of threatening to shoot and kill students.
Bullitt County Schools are taking the threat very seriously, but staff at Old Mill Elementary are trying to treat the school day like any other.
"We just ask for parents to react calmly, reassure their students that the school environment is a safe environment," said Eric Farris, Bullitt County School's attorney.
Bullitt County Schools increased security at Old Mill Elementary after police received a tip that Nicholas Bain planned to go to the school and shoot and kill students. A police report says Bain specifically made threats to kill his neighbor, a student at Old Mill.
Police presence was not enough for some parents. Attendance records show 20 percent of Old Mill students stayed home Monday.
Farris said, "The young man who was arrested lives near the elementary school so it would not be unusual for him to walk over campus."
Bain is a student at Bullitt East High School, but the school has started expulsion proceedings.
The 18-year-old was arraigned on terroristic threatening charges Monday morning. The judge increased his bond to $100,000 and he is not allowed to contact the victim or the school.
"It's very upsetting to go down and see this happen to him -- he don't deserve this," said Steve Floyd, a family friend.
Floyd has lived next door to Bain for 10 years. He says this is all a misunderstanding.
"I don't believe it," he said. "I know the boy too much to know he's not the kind of kid to go hurt kids. He's the kind of kid that would stand up in front of the kids to keep them from getting hurt."
Floyd says Bain was set up, he got into a fight with another student and this was retaliation. He says he has pictures of text messages to prove it.
Parts of the messages say, "I don't want Nick to be in jail for a long time, I wanted him to see how bad it hurt me."
The sender goes on to say, "Tomorrow before he walks into the courtroom, I'm gonna withdraw my statement."
Mt. Washington Police have not responded to questions about these allegations. Bain is scheduled to appear in court again on Dec. 16.
The Bullitt County Public Schools Superintendent released this statement on the situation:
Dear BCPS Staff and Community,
By now, most everyone in our community has heard the news that an 18 year old teenager has been arrested for terroristic threatening related to Old Mill Elementary School. We initially learned of the investigation and arrest from the media on Sunday afternoon and commend the Mt. Washington Police Department for their rapid response and subsequent communication with district officials. Before making a broad statement, we wanted to make sure that we had a solid understanding of the facts. The individual alleged to have made the threat - Nick Bain - is in custody at the Bullitt County Detention Center and poses no danger to the students of Bullitt County Schools. He was arrested on Saturday four hours after MWPD received a report of Mr. Bain making threats against an individual student and against the school as a whole. It is our understanding that the threat was made several weeks ago, but the person making the report felt it should have be taken seriously only this weekend. According to court records, Bain was arraigned this morning and is being held on a $100,000 full cash bond. It is up to the Commonwealth's Attorney and the Bullitt County Grand Jury to determine his legal fate at this point, but based on the allegations made in the arrest report and from reports we have received from the County Attorney's office and Mt. Washington Police Department, we will begin expulsion proceedings and, if released from custody, he will receive educational services at an alternative location. Through all this, we should be mindful that Mr. Bain has been convicted of nothing and we will obviously reevaluate our response should new information come to light.
School resumed as normal at Old Mill Elementary School this morning, though attendance was only about 80%. Members of BCPS leadership team, Bullitt County Sheriff's Department, Mt. Washington Police Department and school administrators were present to greet, provide reassurance, and answer any questions from students, parents and community members. The district is working in cooperation with local law enforcement to ensure security and to exchange information throughout this investigation. Mt. Washington Police department moved quickly to act upon the reports made to apprehend the suspect and continues to work diligently to protect the community. To our knowledge, the investigation has yielded no other information to indicate that this event was anything other than an isolated event from one individual.
Because of the current situation and in light of the anniversary of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting a year ago this week, added security measures are in place for all schools. Local law enforcement will provide an increased presence at all schools in Bullitt County during the next weeks. In the year since the tragic event at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Bullitt County Schools has made extensive modifications to a number of facilities and has refined and reinforced practices to control access to each school including requiring all visitors to present identification to the front office staff and state the reason for their visit prior to gaining entry to the building. Additionally, all schools' classroom doors are either locked or can be quickly locked during instruction to provide additional security for our students. We have many avenues for students to make known their fears and suspicions and our staff members are constantly watchful for unusual behaviors. Our local law enforcement agencies work closely with BCPS to plan for emergencies and are well prepared to respond to an event should one happen in our schools. Despite the terrible events we see across the country where children are harmed, research shows that schools are a safer environment for students than anywhere else. The absolute first priority of Bullitt County Schools is to provide the safest environment possible in which to educate our students.