"Joker"s' Bomb Threat Prompts Wayne High School Evacuation

By Max Resnik


4 photos

September 21, 2012 Updated Dec 4, 2013 at 3:20 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – A bomb threat is made against Wayne High School, but it is a local radio station that takes the call from an individual imitating “The Joker” from the Batman movie, “The Dark Knight.”

The events began just after 7 a.m. Friday when WOWO reporter Kylie Havens received a call to the newsroom from a person mimicking the voice of "The Joker."

The voice told Havens that he placed three bombs in Wayne High School. Havens, at first, said she did not know what to do and that she thought it was a joke. Then, she told the caller to hold on and that she could not hear him. She asked, "What did you say?" and tried to put the caller on speaker phone. Havens says the caller then hung up immediately. Next, she notified police of the threat.

Havens describes the phone call as scary and says she knew instantly that the individual behind the voice was trying to imitate The Joker.

“It was scary. I was scared because it was like—I knew right away that’s what he was trying to do was The Joker voice. He nailed it,” says Havens.

Krista Stockman, spokeswoman with the Fort Wayne Community Schools, says the district was notified of the threat at approximately 7:10 a.m. She says most students were still en route to Wayne High School. Students and faculty that had already arrived were taken to the football stadium. Students on buses remained on board while the Allen County Sheriff’s Department performed a sweep of the premises.

“We always take these things seriously. Student safety is our top priority. This one was a little bit different because we did evacuate students just because of the timing because there weren’t a lot of students here, so it was more efficient to search the building if we got those few students out. So we searched the building quickly and got on with the day.”

Corporal Jeremy Tinkle with the Allen County Sheriff’s Department says the sweep ended close to 8 a.m. No explosive devices were found. Students and faculty were allowed to re-enter Wayne High School for classes thereafter. He says both the sheriff’s department and FWCS correctly handled the situation.

“Fort Wayne Community Schools following their protocol getting the students out of the building with us being here controlling the exits, controlling the crowd and making sure that people are safe. That's what we're here to do and fortunately they were able to send the students back in for school today.”

Deputy Prosecutor Mike McAlexander with the Allen County Prosecutor’s Office says that if caught, the individual could be charged with a class D Felony for knowingly calling in a false bomb threat. If charged, the person responsible for the threat could face up to three years in prison.

This weekend is Wayne High School’s homecoming.

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