LEBANON, TN (WSMV) – A Mount Juliet woman is facing several charges after she made a threat involving a high school on a social media platform.
According to a release from District Attorney Jason Lawson, Mary Keagan Lawrence, 18, has been charged for indicating that Green Hill High School would be the target of a shooting on November 12.
The post was made on YikYak, an anonymous message board social media platform.
As a result of the threat, the absentee rate of Green Hill High School more than tripled on November 12.
“We take all of these threats seriously, and have a zero tolerance policy,” said Lawson.
Wilson County Schools has no record of Lawrence being a student in the system.
“While the person charged in this case is not a current student, we do remind our families to have conversations about the seriousness of these types of incidents involving any type of social media, and that they are investigated with extreme importance among multiple law enforcement agencies,” the school system said in a statement on Monday.
Increased police presence was required at the school, and a coordinated effort with the FBI, TBI, Wilson County Sheriff’s Office, Mt. Juliet Police, and the DA’s office immediately began to investigate the incident.
“People are wrong in their belief that when they post anonymously that law enforcement cannot determine who made the post. While the post may be anonymous to the others on the site, law enforcement has the mechanisms to determine who made the post, and we will utilize those mechanisms and charge the person responsible,” said Lawson.
YikYak is an on-line message board that permits people within a five-mile radius to see posts which are claimed to be anonymous.
The site has been the source of intense criticism due to the potential for cyber bullying and threating communications. The site was first created in 2016, but closed in 2017 as a result of these issues. It was re-opened in August 2021.
According to YikYak’s website, it volunteers cooperation to law enforcement agencies regarding any post made on the platform.
She is expected to appear in Wilson County General Sessions Court on April 14, 2022.