Desert Wind Middle School. Photo by Michelle Chance

The Maricopa Police Department says a school-shooting threat allegedly made by a local junior high student this week is “unfounded.”

A Desert Wind Middle School student made the threat Feb. 13 and received disciplinary action, according to a statement from the Maricopa Unified School District.

MPD spokesman Ricardo Alvarado said a school resource officer interviewed the student’s parents and deemed the threat “not credible” because there are no weapons in the home.

News of the alleged threat first spread through social media Friday and sparked concern throughout the community.

Adam Ivins posted on Facebook Friday alleging the student had threatened to “bring guns and kill” his child and a few other students at school three days ago.

Ivins said he spoke with school and district administrators as well as with MPD but wanted to make sure other parents knew about the situation.

“I do not know if this this kid has threatened others, or if the others have reported the situation or have made their parents even aware of it,” Ivins wrote on Facebook.

MUSD did not immediately inform parents of the threat at DWMS, but the district does plan to send a digital statement on the matter to parents Friday at 6 p.m. “so that parents are home with their children when the message is delivered, said district Human Resources Director Tom Beckett.

The statement reads in full:

Dear Desert Wind Parents and Guardians – 

On 2/13 a Desert Wind Middle School student made a threat. The assistant principal was immediately made aware of the situation. The School Resource officer conducted a threat assessment with this student and found that the threat was not credible. The student who made the threat has received disciplinary action according to the student handbook and Governing Board policy. Student safety is the highest priority of Desert Wind Middle School and we will continue to do everything possible to maintain a safe learning environment for students.  

Knowledge of the threat comes just two days after a devastating school shooting in a Florida high school in which a former student is suspected of killing 17 people.

MUSD Superintendent Steve Chestnut issued a statement Thursday concerning the tragedy. In it, he writes the “physical and emotional safety of our students and staff is the top priority at Maricopa Unified School District.”

The statement also states every school has an emergency plan in place and the district works closely with local law enforcement to prepare for those emergencies.

“We regularly practice our safety procedures to ensure everyone knows what to do,” Chestnut said in the statement. “While no amount of planning can guarantee that a tragedy such as this will not occur, we do everything we can to keep students and staff safe and always look for ways to continually improve.”

Parents thanked Ivins for informing them of the threat online.

“This is not a sign that we should ignore. We need to provide solutions. Not hate. But solutions. I pray for the child and that the parents are involved and helping them,” Ivins wrote.


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