SOAP LAKE, Wash. -- All schools in Soap Lake were closed Tuesday due to threats and security was to be added for the rest of the week.
The school board held an executive session Monday night to discuss building security and announced the one-day closure.
The Grant County town has about 500 students in four schools.
Police said a 16-year-old high school boy threatened to shoot up the school. They said he was immediately taken into custody. When school officials found out he was released, they said they were not taking any chances.
“I'm afraid someone can just walk in and end up shooting someone or a friend or a teacher,” said fifth grade student Rita Worthington.
“He just said he was going to kill all the students and the staff,” said District Superintendent Dan McDonald.
The boy was taken into custody on a felony threat charge on Thursday. The district did not notify parents.
"The situation was off campus. There was no need to,” said McDonald.
That situation changed Monday night when district officials found out the high schooler was released from the juvenile detention center. That is when the district sent out automated messages.
A school parent said she did not receive a call and she found out about the threat Tuesday morning through a family friend.
"It does bother me because my daughter goes to school here. It worries me for all the children here,” said Katherine Worthington.
Law enforcement did not give KREM 2 News an answer as to why the boy was released.
Staff stayed at the school all day Tuesday to make sure parent’s who did not get the message knew the school was closed. They also planned security measures with police.
"We want to do everything to secure our students and our staff and our buildings so we have a safe environment for our kids,” said McDonald.
At least one officer will be in and around the schools when the school reopens on Wednesday.
All after school activities for Wednesday have been canceled in advance.