16-year-old boy arrested in connection with online threat against Parma High School, police say

CLEVELAND, Ohio — Parma police arrested a 16-year-old Cleveland boy and accused him of making an online threat against Parma High School, a move that led officials to close the school Thursday.

The teenager, who does not attend the school, is in police custody and potentially faces a charge of inducing panic, according to Parma police.

The boy sent a message to a Parma High School student through Instagram, saying to avoid going to school because there was going to be a shooting, police said. School officials learned of the threat Thursday morning and notified police, who then made the decision to close the school as a precaution.

Police were able to identify the boy and found him at his Cleveland home.

The boy told police he sent the message as a joke because he thought it would be funny, the release says.

“The Parma Police Department takes each and every threat made against our schools as a grave threat to public safety, and it will utilize every department resource to fully investigate these threats and recommend criminal charges against perpetrators who use these online platforms to spread fear and panic in our schools,” police said in a news release.

Read more crime stories on cleveland.com:

Man charged with killing stepfather in South Euclid, police say

Shooting during memorial gathering in Akron kills 1, wounds 2 others

North Royalton-based drug ring sold 1,350 pounds of cocaine in Northeast Ohio, made $20 million, feds say

Trio arrested as part of Cleveland dirt-bike crackdown indicted on felony charges

Two shot, including a 3-year-old girl, in Cleveland’s Kinsman neighborhood