General Crime

* Nearly 35 percent of the student body was absent from San Jose’s Willow Glen Middle School due to threatening graffiti

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Nearly 35 percent of the student body was absent from San Jose’s Willow Glen Middle School today due to fears stemming from a threatening message found late last month on the campus, a San Jose Unified School District spokeswoman said.The discovery of threatening graffiti found on a bathroom wall was reported April 30 by school officials, San Jose police Officer Jose Garcia said. School district spokeswoman Karen Fuqua said she could not comment on the content of the message because it would jeopardize an ongoing investigation. She said the incident has been under investigation since it was reported nearly a month ago, but that it received more attention over the weekend because students were discussing it on Facebook.”The heightened activity was because students put it on Facebook … that’s kind of where it really became widespread,” Fuqua said.Earlier today, one student posted a message on her wall stating “You guys I’m scared, there’s cops at Willow Glen because some idiot made a kill list!”Fuqua said about 400 out of a total of 1,148 students were initially absent from school, but that some returned later in the day after parents were notified of the incident.”Kids were calm, classes went on as usual,” Fuqua said. “The principal sent out information and we will continue to update parents and to work with the San Jose Police Department.” School officials sent an e-mail to parents today stating, “The district, school and the Police Department are working together to bring closure to this unfortunate occurrence. Classes and related activities are continuing as normal.”Garcia said in the past month, police have interviewed several people, including a male student who was suspended for an unrelated reason. That student may or may not be involved, Garcia said. He said officers continued to patrol the school throughout the day.Fuqua said anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the San Jose Unified School District anonymous phone line at (866) 344-TELL.

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