BEDFORD, Ohio — Bedford school officials have announced the person suspected of making an online threat "was apprehended without resistance yesterday."
Bedford police say the suspect is a 14-year-old freshman "who did not have any access to weapons."
"He made a conscious decision to make the threats in hopes of having school canceled," the department said Wednesday. "While achieving his desired outcome, he will now deal with the very serious consequences."
In a statement released to 3News on Wednesday morning, the district also noted that while the threat was not credible, Bedford school officials are "taking today to review, adjust and practice some safety protocols as well as prepare SEL lessons for students and staff in preparation for their return tomorrow." We have also learned the FBI is working with Bedford police officials in their investigation.
"The situation is fluid, but the FBI will respond with appropriate personnel and resources, as needed," the FBI Cleveland Division wrote. "We commend the Bedford Police Department for their swift action and continued partnership."
These new details come after Bedford City Schools closed all buildings within the district Tuesday and Wednesday. On Monday, Bedford High School was also closed.
Bedford Deputy Police Chief Rick Suts told us the first threat came in Sunday and included two photos of guns, followed by a letter on Monday "upping the ante to make sure the school stayed closed. Suts was among those who were on-hand to arrest the teen suspect.
"When he saw us come through the door, he knew his world was over for a while," he said. "Now, a kid with straight As who was probably going to get scholarships to any school he wanted to is probably not going to be going to college because he's going to be red flagged for [a] felony."
Officials further described the teen as someone who had never been in trouble before, and that he had no access to guns in his home. So, why did he make the threats?
"He wanted a couple days off to finish some papers that were due that he hadn't finished," Suts claimed. "He thought this would be a good idea to get a couple days extra time."
Now, with the 14-year-old facing charges in juvenile court, Suts hopes others remember that actions have consequences.
"Any other kids, I hope they're seeing this," he said, "because you don't have to actually live it to learn the lesson. Hopefully this is a good lesson for every kid."
You can read the entire Bedford City Schools that was issued Wednesday morning below:
"We are very blessed to be able to share that though it was not a credible threat, with the collaboration of the district and law enforcement, the individual that made the online threat was apprehended without resistance yesterday.
"Though the threat was not credible, based upon conversations and feedback, we are taking today to review, adjust, and practice some safety protocols as well as prepare SEL lessons for students and staff in preparation for their return tomorrow. Again, though there was no credible threat, we refuse to take these things lightly. We believe in working as a family, and being reflective in an effort to provide the safest environment for all members of the learning community.
"We want to thank law enforcement, as well as our families and staff, for their cooperation, diligence and patience as we worked through this unfortunate situation. We look forward to more success and progress through the remainder of the school year."
The Bedford Police Department also said:
"As many of you are aware Bedford schools were closed Monday and Tuesday due to threats received via the internet. The school administration notified us immediately, and an investigation was launched. We received assistance from the Cleveland FBI office and several SEALE departments. As a result of that investigation, a suspect was identified. We executed a search warrant at his home, and he was arrested without incident. We want to make this perfectly clear, there was never any real threat to anyone's safety. The suspect is a 14-year-old freshman who did not have any access to weapons. He made a conscious decision to make the threats in hopes of having school canceled. While achieving his desired outcome, he will now deal with the very serious consequences. The safety of the students and staff was the top priority in every decision made during this time. Hopefully, this lesson resonates with anyone else that is looking for an easy day off."
On Thursday, Bedford City Schools confirmed that they are open. The Board of Education is also scheduled to have a meeting tonight at 6 p.m.
Editor's note: Video at the top of this story was originally published in a previous story on Dec. 6, 2022.