Juvenile arrested following NPHS bomb scare

A 15-year-old male sophomore was arrested for a bomb scare the morning of Thursday, Feb. 14, at New Prague High School. His actions caused the evacuation of students and the lockdown of the school while law enforcement officials searched through the building at 221 12th St. NE.

Principal Tom Doig said a note was found in a boy’s bathroom indicating there was a bomb in the building. New Prague Police were notified at 7:40 a.m. and the approximately 1,200 students were evacuated to the New Prague Area Community Center and the Gymnastics Center, located across the street from the building.

While law enforcement officials searched the structure, two New Prague Police vehicles blocked 12th Street. By 9:15 a.m. faculty started to let students back into the building.

Police Chief Mark Vosejpka explained the discovery of the suspect happened during the evacuation of the school. The 15-year-old male, who has not been identified, started making comments about the situation that weren’t public knowledge. A fellow student informed a faculty member, who pulled the 15- year-old aside. The juvenile made a threat about having something in his backpack, which was then taken from him.

School administrators and New Prague Police Officer John Madigan talked with the student. The juvenile admitted to putting up the note. Chief Vosejpka said the student’s backpack was searched. It had evidence that made officers believe they had the right person.

The juvenile also admitted to the earlier placement of a bag holding a white substance with a note claiming it was cocaine, actually found to be baking soda, in the same restroom where he left the note with the bomb threat.

The juvenile was taken to Scott County Jail and booked for terroristic threats and disorderly conduct. A juvenile petition is pending.

Officers from the Scott County Sheriff’s Office and the State Patrol assisted with the search and the investigation