Saturday, January 10, 2015

Highlands Bomb Threat Suspect Pleads Guilty

Tyler Swope, who was charged with calling in a false bomb threat to Highlands High School, has been convicted./FB

In the same week Amelia High School parents were notified of a terror threat and had to wait hours in traffic to retrieve their children from school, the man charged with reporting a false bomb threat to Highlands High School last January has been convicted.

20-year-old Tyler Swope of Bellevue and Highlands graduate, who Fort Thomas Police identified and charged in March of last year, pled guilty in front of Campbell County Judge Fred Stine to one count of terroristic threatening in the first degree and five counts of falsely reporting an incident.

These were the same counts with which he was originally charged by FTPD.

Like in Batavia this week, many Highlands parents expressed frustration that the bomb threat, which was called in at 7 a.m. on Jan. 15, 2014, did not warrant a message asking them to keep their children home.

In a statement to FTM on the day of the bomb threat, Assistant Superintendent Rita Byrd said, "We moved as quickly as we could and I hope parents understand that the safety of the people in the building is our first priority. As soon as we addressed those safety issues we implemented our plan for these situations."

For more details of the bomb threat, see FTM's full coverage here.

Later that same year, Byrd updated FTM on the school district's response to questions raised, in light of the incident, about its emergency protocol: "Administrators have discussed our emergency protocols since the bomb threat as that is a charge that we are expected to do as part of our jobs. We are continuing to review what's in place and update the various areas as needed. While we have made a few updates, the basic emergency protocols that have been in place since the beginning of the year are still current. We are also looking at professional development activities for our faculty and staff to make sure we have safety procedures in place at all schools."

Swope is a former volunteer firefighter in Southgate, and also volunteered his time at the Kenton County Animal Shelter.

The court will hand down Swope's sentence on Feb. 2.

- Staff report

13 comments:

  1. The perpetrator is a Highlands graduate.

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  2. That means nothing.

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  3. Judge Stine needs to throw the BOOK at this guy. He absolutely traumatized my kids.

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  4. I feel like with Tyler being labeled as a great kid that he screwed up here and is now getting the help he needed I don't see a reason for him to get the harshest punishment, school wasn't in session. Lay off of him

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    1. Come down hard Judge. Make an example. Especially in today's day and age we want no part of this in Campbell County? And this kid wanted to be a firefighter!?

      Go Michelle Snodgrass!

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  5. His motive/connection to the school should have been part of the story. Rather than wondering why some random person from Bellevue would call in a bomb threat to Highlands High School.

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    1. It's an open plea meaning that no discovery has been made by the defense yet. The prosecutor's office doesn't even know his motivations yet. That should come out at sentencing.

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  6. If thats all it takes to "absolutely traumatize" your kids..... good luck with life....

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    1. You must be one of his buddies that doesn't have any kids.

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  7. How are your kids tramatized school wasn't in session? Why isn't that in an article anywhere, if Tyler did it he obviously didn't want to harm anyone!

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    1. School absolutely was in session? Do you not remember everyone being herded into the middle school gym? It's pretty obvious this is one of Tyler's friends or family trying to stick up for him.

      I'm sorry, but the community didn't deserve this. He needs to pay.

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    2. Read the article, the call was made to the school at 7 am, school starts at 8am. If you knew tyler he was an amazing guy still is as a matter of fact. He loved HHS.

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    3. Early bird students were there and many more were arriving. He caused absolute chaos and fear. Calling a bomb threat into your alma mater sure does seem like he's amazing and is a GREAT way to show that you loved your school.

      GIVE ME A BREAK!

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