2018-02-28 / Front Page

School shooting threat

Student arrested, charged with making terroristic threat

Ulises Saldana Ulises Saldana In the wake of the Parkland, Fla., school shooting, local investigators were investigating a report of a student threatening to carry out a shooting at Early County High School.

Following the report, which reached authorities after school hours Thursday, Feb. 22, sheriff’s investigators, assisted by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, launched an investigation and worked throughout the night.

The investigation led to the Friday morning arrest of Ulises Saldana, 19, of Damascus. Saldana, a sophmore at ECHS, was taken into custody without incident at his residence in Damascus.

The suspect was charged with making terroristic threats and booked into the Early County Jail where he remains pending a bond hearing in Early County Superior Court. Saldana may face additional charges.

While the investigation corroborated the threats were communicated, the arrest and other investigative steps led the sheriff’s office and the school system to conclude there was no immediate danger at any of the school campuses on Friday,” investigator Will Caudill told the News.

While Caudill was unable to comment on specific evidence recovered at Saldana’s residence, he did state, “Nothing was found that we feel posed an immediate threat to inflict harm to staff or students.”

Caudill also noted the threat was communicated via social media, and that no prior criminal history has been found.

Early County School Superintendent Bronwyn Ragan-Martin was notified of the threat Thursday afternoon and was kept updated throughout the investigation.

In a statement to parents Friday, the superintendent stated, “ECSS and the Early County Sheriff ’s Office are working jointly to develop a plan for increased safety, and the ECSS staff are working on several areas to tighten security in the schools.”

“...our students’ safety is our top priority, and we are working diligently to ensure our campuses are safe. If you become aware of any threats, please do not hesitate to contact ECSS or the Early County Sheriff’s Office.”

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