18-year-old student arrested for Huntington ISD bomb-threat hoax

18-year-old student arrested for Huntington ISD bomb-threat hoax

HUNTINGTON, TX (KTRE) - Huntington ISD police arrested an 18-year-old student Monday in connection to a hoax bomb threat that caused district officials to bus students to Red Devil Stadium on Jan. 29 in order to ensure their safety.

It began as an ordinary school day that quickly turned into a scene of chaos.

"We saw the buses pull around and we didn't know what was going on," said Noah Beason and Shelby Wagner, Huntington High School students.

In the middle of lunch students were told to evacuate the school immediately, officials had received word of a bomb threat.

"It was kind of scary," Wagner said.

A first for these students, their parents and staff, all forced into a plan of action.

"We felt like there was going to be nothing to it but when it comes to student safety and that being our number one goal in Huntington ISD to provide a safe school environment, we knew we had to take it seriously," said David Flowers, Huntington ISD Superintendent.

The mastermind behind what was later proved to be nothing more than a hoax 18-year-old Heidi Thibodeaux of Etoile. Her reasoning? Police say just wanted to get out of class.

"I feel for that young lady and exactly what happened. She was a new student to our district and just made a bad decision. We all make decisions at times, this one was just a super costly decision," Flowers said.

It's a mistake that cost the school over two hours of valuable classroom instruction and an immense amount of worry.

"It's a disruption from the get-go. Having to get our travel teams together so they could get the buses, to get folks out of class to be able to go get those buses so that's a disruption having to cover classes," Flowers said.

Not to mention the bomb squad needed to investigation to situation. The silver-lining though, through all the disruption, students still managed to learn something.

"Don't be dumb, don't do stupid stuff I guess. Don't just try to get out of class and create a panic at the school just to do it. Think a little smarter," Beason and Wagner said.

Police say a Crime Stoppers tip led police to question Thibodeaux, and she gave a full confession. When asked about Thibodeaux's motive, Jinkins said she gave no other reason to do it other than that she wanted to get out of class.

Huntington ISD has never had any problems with Thibodeaux, Jinkins said. He added that she acted alone, and they have no reason to believe that anyone else was involved in the hoax.

Thibodeaux remains behind bars at the Angelina County Jail on a third-degree felony terroristic threat charge. Bail has not yet been set.

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