Trussville headteachers under fire for manipulating student’s ‘death note’


Some parents in Trussville, Alabama are calling for major changes after learning new details about how Hewitt Trussville High School and Trussville City Schools handled a troubling ‘death book’ found in possession of a student almost a year ago. Learn more in the video above. Until last week neither the Hewitt-Trussville High SRO nor the Trussville Police Department knew of the incident, leaving many in the community frustrated with the people responsible for keeping their children safe at school. “I don’t feel safe in our school system,” said parent Jessie Odell. “I don’t feel like we’re getting clear communication.” Odell and other parents recently met with the police chief in a closed meeting to share their concerns and discuss the notebook which was found and reported by a teacher in October 2021. “We don’t want not end up with a Columbine,” said Odell, who is calling for changes in school leadership and city leaders to act on the crime, which has since been dropped due to the language of the law of the ‘Alabama on terrorist threats. At this time, the case against the student is closed. “We need a new superintendent,” Odell said. “That’s what we call the city council and the mayor to do. If not, I have to interrogate them so I don’t see the urgency of this.” the incident and what is being done in response: “In October 2021, a teacher found a notebook containing disturbing information at HTHS. The student was taken to the counselor’s office and met with the principal and counselor. The notebook was based on the Netflix series “Death Note” where a person can imagine someone’s death and make it supernatural – for example, the person in the notebook can be eaten by ants, hit by a bus, hit by a ladder, drowned, etc. It was determined at that time by the director and counselor and based on the information available that the notebook was a fantasy and no further action was necessary other than confiscating the book and monitoring the behavior of the student. 22 school year with no further discipline issues.” In light of the events surrounding Uvalde and as part of our ongoing safety plans, Mr. Salem and our SRO team have implemented numerous safety protocols for the school year. 22-23 So when the events of the past week came to light, the potential threat was immediately considered and the threat assessment protocol was fully implemented.Tim Salem, School Principal Hewitt-Trussville Secondary Mr. Salem acknowledged this error and acknowledges the error of not involving the SRO for the threat assessment protocol in 2021. In hindsight, the SRO and central office administration should have been informed about this book and television series so that the threat assessment protocol can be fully implemented.” Once again, TCS is committed to maintaining a safe school environment at all levels. All of our students are safe, every day. We are so grateful to have 7 SROs in 5 schools. Over the next few weeks, we will review our security protocols again and work with Chief Rush and his officers to ensure all protocols are followed. “We understand parents are concerned, we understand their disappointment, and we are committed to improving. School safety continues to be our top priority.” – MAYOR’S PRESS CONFERENCE Trussville Mayor Buddy Choat said held a press conference on Tuesday to address safety issues at schools in the city.Choat said there was a “complete lack of communication” between principals and the city, including the police department Watch the mayor’s presser below.Choat said the student who was found with the “death note” last year allegedly made a threat on September 16, prompting the SRO and the Trussville Police Department to investigate. Choat said the student admitted to making threats at the school “at least 30 times”.The student’s home was searched and Choat said police found nothing other than a handgun belonging to the father.—Get the ap WVTM 13 plication for the latest updates on this developing story.

Some parents in Trussville, Alabama are calling for major changes after learning new details about how Hewitt Trussville High School and Trussville City Schools handled a troubling ‘death book’ found in possession of a student almost a year ago. Learn more in the video above.

Until last week neither the Hewitt-Trussville High SRO nor the Trussville Police Department knew of the incident, leaving many in the community frustrated with the people responsible for keeping their children safe at school.

“I don’t feel safe in our school system,” said parent Jessie Odell. “I don’t feel like we’re getting clear communication.”

Odell and other parents recently met with the police chief in a closed meeting to share their concerns and discuss the notebook which was found and reported by a teacher in October 2021.

“We don’t want to end up with a Columbine,” said Odell, who is calling for changes in school leadership and civic leaders to take action.

The notebook allegedly contained a list of 30 student names and led to the student being charged with a crime, which has since been dropped due to the wording of Alabama’s Terrorist Threats Act. For now, the case against the student is closed.

“We need a new superintendent,” Odell said. “That’s what we’re calling on the city council and the mayor to do. Otherwise I have to question them so I don’t see the urgency of this.”

SUPERINTENDENT’S STATEMENT

The Office of Trussville City Schools Superintendent Pattie Neill sent the following statement regarding the incident and what is being done in response:

“In October 2021, a teacher found a notebook containing disturbing information at HTHS. The student was brought to the counselor’s office and met with the principal and counselor. The notebook was based on the Netflix series ‘Death Note’ where a person can imagine someone’s death and make it supernatural – for example, the person in the notebook could be eaten by ants, hit by a bus, hit by a ladder, drowned, etc. This was determined at this at that time by the principal and counselor and based on information available that the notebook was a fantasy and no further action was required other than confiscating the book and monitoring the student’s behavior. the 2021-22 school year without further discipline issues.

“In light of the events surrounding Uvalde and as part of our ongoing security plans, Mr. Salem and our SRO team have implemented numerous security protocols for the 22-23 school year. of the past week was revealed, the potential threat was acted upon immediately, and the threat assessment protocol was fully implemented.

“There was a meeting with the city, the chief of police, the superintendent, a member of the school board and Tim Salem, principal of Hewitt-Trussville High School. Mr. Salem acknowledged this error and acknowledges the error not to involve the SRO for the threat assessment protocol in 2021. In hindsight, the SRO and central office administration should have been made aware of this book and TV series so that the assessment protocol threats can be fully implemented.

“Once again, TCS is committed to maintaining a safe school environment at all levels. All of our students are safe, every day. We are very grateful to have 7 SROs in 5 schools. In the coming weeks, we will again be reviewing our security protocols and working with Chief Rush and his officers to ensure all protocols are followed.

“We understand that parents are worried, we understand their disappointment and we are committed to improving. School safety continues to be our top priority.”

MAYOR’S PRESS CONFERENCE

Trussville Mayor Buddy Choat held a press conference on Tuesday to address school safety issues in the city. Choat said there was a “complete lack of communication” between the superintendents and the city, including the police department. Watch the mayor’s presser below.

Choat said the student who was found with the “death note” last year allegedly made a threat Sept. 16, prompting the SRO and the Trussville Police Department to investigate. Choat said the student admitted to making threats at school “at least 30 different times”.

The student’s home was searched and Choat said police found nothing but a handgun belonging to the father.

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