Aspen schools closed Friday after bomb threat
ASPEN, Colorado ” Aspen schools are closed today, after a bomb threat was found on the wall of a boys bathroom Thursday afternoon.
Deputies and investigators from the Pitkin County Sheriff’s Office and security officers from Specialized Protective Services stood guard outside school buildings in the cold on Friday morning. A search was underway inside with two bomb-sniffing dogs.
Little information was available Friday morning, but authorities were expected to issue a press release sometime after 10 a.m.
The district announced Thursday night that all schools on the campus, including the Cottage Preschool, would be closed Friday.
The threat was directed at Aspen High School, according to a news release issued at approximately 9:20 p.m. The message was left on the wall in a boys bathroom at the high school, Pitkin County Deputy George Kremer said. Near the end of the school day Thursday, a student noticed the message and then reported it to school administrators, the deputy said.
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“In essence it said the Aspen High School will be blown up tomorrow,” Kremer said.
At approximately 10 p.m. Thursday, Kremer said agents from the Grand Junction branch of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and one of the valley’s bomb-sniffing dogs, were en route to the campus.
“We take all of these threats very seriously,” the deputy said. “The standard is the utmost safety for all the students.”
Kremer said officials made the decision to close school at approximately 4 p.m. Thursday.
According to the district’s news release, “The Aspen School District is working closely with the Aspen Police Department and the Pitkin County Sheriff’s [Office] in an effort to investigate this threat, secure the campus, and ensure the safety of its students and staff. It is the District’s hope that the campus will be secured in a timely manner thus allowing scheduled activities to continue as planned for Friday afternoon and evening.”
Kremer said the Aspen Community School, which is the district’s charter program and is located in Woody Creek, will remain open Friday.
“We are never happy to miss a valuable day of school,” the district’s news release said. “Any future incidents of a similar manner may result in an additional day added to the end of the school year.”