Two students at Bonny Eagle Middle School in Buxton were charged with terrorizing Thursday after allegedly threatening to bring weapons to school to attack fellow students, staff and teachers.

Buxton Police Chief Troy Cline, in a telephone interview, said that if other middle school students had not intervened and warned school staff, the situation could have turned violent.

“There was a threat made that could have happened, that the school could have been shot up,” Cline said Thursday evening.

Cline said the students, a boy and a girl, each 14 years old, were detained by officers and moved to an isolated area of the school Thursday morning while police investigated.

Cline said he believes the two are eighth-graders, but couldn’t confirm it.

“At no time were there weapons in the middle school or any indication that the students had access to weapons,” a statement issued by Cline, MSAD 6 Superintendent Paul Penna and Middle School Principal Benjamin Harris said. “This incident speaks volumes to all of us about the importance of school officials working closely with law enforcement. It reminds us all to stay alert and if you see something that doesn’t seem right we need to say something.”

Cline would not discuss a possible motive for the threats, which the boy and girl made on social media and in conversations with students in the days prior to Thursday’s confrontation with school officials and police. Cline and Buxton police Officer Warren Day responded to the call from school administrators around 8:20 a.m.

Cline said the boy, who faces four counts of terrorizing, was the “predominant aggressor.” He threatened to “shoot the school up,” Cline said. The girl was charged with one count of terrorizing, a misdemeanor, Cline said.

MSAD 6 school officials and Buxton police credited other middle school students with helping them prevent violence.

“Thanks to several of our alert middle school students who had the courage to speak up to a trusted adult, we were able to avoid a potential serious incident this morning,” the statement said. “The building administrative team promptly investigated the student concerns and called the Buxton Police Department. The Buxton Police Department responded quickly, investigated, and took two students into custody.”

“It’s a win for the good guys,” Cline said. “We were able to prevent a potential catastrophe.”

Cline said his department will work closely with the York County District Attorney’s Office to determine if additional charges should be filed. The students are expected to appear in Juvenile Court in Biddeford in late March or early April.

Both students have been released and placed in the custody of their parents, according to Cline.

Dennis Hoey can be contacted at 791-6365 or at:

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