PIERCE COUNTY, WASHINGTON (KOMO) – The Pierce County, Washington sheriff says a female teacher has been arrested after threatening to shoot students.
The 58-year-old teacher worked at Emerald Ridge High School in Puyallup.
Sophomore Brooklyn Bisson said she first heard about the arrest of her teacher from a friend during 5th period.
“I was, like, really shocked to like hear that it was her because she’s a very much like a ‘I’m-here-to-help-you’ type of teacher,” she said.
Deputies say 58-year-old Julie Hillend-Jones made threats Tuesday night about shooting students.
Those threats were made off-campus during a conversation with some adults.
Deputies contacted her Wednesday morning.
They said she didn’t back down from those comments so, they took her into custody.
“It’s too bad that teachers can get to the point where they can do something like that, and they are not all like this,” said resident Vicky Binkiewicz.
Deputies say they didn’t find any weapons when they arrested Hillend-Jones.
She was immediately placed on administrative leave.
In a statement, the district told us making threats against the safety of students and staff is a felony crime and taken very seriously by the district.
“We don’t know what lead up to it. Obviously, there’s something. Whether she was actually going to carry it through doesn’t really matter,” said Det. Ed Troyer with the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department. “Just like a kid if you make those types of threats, you’re gonna be in trouble and held accountable.”
Hillend-Jones has no criminal record, and Troyer said investigators so far haven’t discovered any other problems in her teaching history.