Sumter High School student, 16, charged after false claim of gun, shooting on campus


A 16-year-old Sumter High School student has been charged with filing a false report after claiming another student was armed and threatened a shooting at the school, authorities say.

Officers were called to the 2,350-student school on McCrays Mill Road Monday after 9 a.m. when the teen told school officials a classmate showed her a firearm in the restroom. According to Tonyia McGirt, public information officer for the Sumter Police Department, the classmate, the teen claimed, “appeared to be upset and threatened to shoot up the school.”

Students were asked to remain in the building and within their classrooms as officers investigated, McGirt said.

After officers determined there was no credible threat to students and staff on campus, the student admitted she made the story up, according to the police department.

The student, whose name is being withheld because of her age, was taken to a state Department of Juvenile Justice facility in Columbia, McGirt said.

“We take all threats to schools very seriously, and appropriate action must be taken anytime a false claim like this is made,” Sumter Police Chief Russell Roark said.

A message was sent to parents at 11:25 a.m. saying, “While the transition of classes was delayed, the school day is now proceeding as normal,” according to Shelly Galloway, spokeswoman for Sumter School District.