MACOMB COUNTY — A 59-year-old art teacher is accused of slipping hand-written threatening notes into three classrooms at a St. Clair Shores middle school.
Johnna Rhône claimed that the allegations were not true when she appeared in court on Dec. 20.
Police say that she made the false threats at Jefferson Middle School last week and prosecutors say that school surveillance video shows her slipping notes under doors at the school.
Macomb County Prosecutor Pete Lucido read one of the notes at a news conference.
“Start break early,” the alleged notes read. “He’s going to do it. Just don’t be in the hall after lunch. Boom. Get it?”
In the two weeks since the Oxford school shootings, nearly 100 students have been arrested for making false threats throughout the state, making students and teachers fearful about in-person learning.
Prosecutors say this is the first time they are charging an adult.
“I can expect something like this from a child, not an adult,” Lucido said. “We take a zero-tolerance, make no mistake about it. A zero-tolerance in Macomb County, from students and teachers that are threatening others. We will not have that at all.”
Rhône has been teaching art at the school for 21 years and has never had any serious complaints or concerns raised against her according to a statement from Lakeview Public Schools Superintendent Karl Paulson. He also said she has been placed on administrative leave.
Rhône’s bond was set at $75,000, at 10 percent and she was put under house arrest pending a psychological evaluation and has been prohibited from making contact with students or any other staff members from the school.
A probable cause conference is scheduled for Feb. 1.
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