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Two arrested after hoax suicide call prompts lockout at Liberty High

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Police say a teen called the suicide prevention hotline and pretended to be a Liberty student, prompting the school to go into lockout.

COURTESY M.O. STEVENS - Liberty High School was placed in lockout on Wednesday after a teen faked a call to a suicide prevention hotline and claimed to have a weapon on campus.Two teenagers were arrested on Wednesday after a fake suicide call prompted Liberty High School to go into lockout.

According to Principal Greg Timmons, Liberty High School was placed in lockout at about 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 18, after the school received information about a suicidal student on campus.

According to Hillsboro Police Lt. Henry Reimann, the incident involved two teenaged boys, one of whom was a student at Liberty. The other attended another school.

That teen called a suicide prevention hotline Wednesday afternoon and allegedly gave a false name, pretending to be the Liberty student, Reimann, said. The boy told the hotline he had a weapon and was going to harm himself in a school bathroom.

The hotline immediately contacted the high school, Reimann said.

It didn't take long for officials to realize the call was a hoax, Reimann said.

"The school did a great job," Reimann said. "They went to the boy's class and found him at his desk. They immediately knew that this didn't make sense, he can't be on the phone with suicide prevention while he was sitting in class."

Because the teen wasn't on campus, the school was placed in lockout as a precaution and police responded to the scene.

A school lockout is used when there is a threat to staff or students coming from outside the school. Doors are locked and no one is allowed to enter the building.

Reimann said the student called the prevention hotline as a joke.

"He thought it would be funny," Reimann said. "He apparently didn't realize what our response would be, or that crisis line would be calling the school and the school would be calling us."

The lockout was lifted about a half-hour later.

Both students were arrested, Reimann said. It was not immediately clear what the students were charged with.

According to Reimann the caller was in contact with the Liberty student and told him what he planned to do, but Reimann said it's unclear how involved the Liberty student was in the hoax.

"He knew it was happening," Reimann said. "But whether he told the other kid to stop, or knew the extent of what was going on, we're still looking into that."

Wednesday's incident is the second time a Hillsboro school was placed in lockout this week. Evergreen Middle School was placed in lockout earlier this week after a student at the school threatened to harm students after he was suspended.