How much punishment for making a fake threat? - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

How much punishment for making a fake threat?

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A recent string of school lockdowns in the San Diego area has left the community on edge. It has many wondering what the consequences are for making a threat.

San Diego police were at San Ysidro High School Thursday for another bomb threat -- the school's third in two days.

Michele Linley isn't just speaking as a parent, but also as the chief of the district attorney's juvenile division.

"They have good technology. We have good technology too," Linley said.

Linley says arrests are made, and there are consequences. You just don't hear about punishments because juvenile cases are kept confidential. Consequences range from case to case, but can be as harsh -- as much as 465 days in Juvenile Hall -- and if you're lucky enough to just get probation, you'll still have serious restrictions.

"The judge can say you can't have a computer, you can't use social media. You're not going to be able to text your friends because you're not going to have a phone," Linley said.

If it seems like we've had a lot of school threats recently, it's because we have. Six schools have been targeted in less than two months. Last November, an online threat was posted against Torrey Pines High School. A 17-year-old boy was arrested in that case. Also in November, a 16-year-old girl was arrested for an online threat targeting Canyon Crest Academy. Last December, a threat was phoned in to Castle Park High School. Earlier this month, a 15-year-old girl was arrested in an online threat targeting Carlsbad High School.

On Wednesday, San Ysidro received two phoned-in threats, and a threat was phoned in to Oceanside High School.

Linley says there's no consistent answer as to why kids call in threats. Occasionally it's because there are deep-seated emotional problems, but sometimes it's simply because the child doesn't want to go to school that day, or is just trying to show off.

Parents can be held financially responsible for their child's actions, and can be made to pay fines and fees for juvenile detention and home supervision.

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