January 20, 2022

Bomb threat stops BOCES, Cortland schools

Todd R. McAdam/managing editor

Cortland County sheriff's vehicles, and other emergency vehicles wait Wednesday morning outside the Charles H. McEvoy campus of Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES, where a bomb threat had been reported.

A bomb threat Wednesday morning led to hold-in-place orders at the Onondaga-Cortland-Madison BOCES campus in Cortlandville and Cortland High School, officials said

Cortland County sheriff’s officers responded at 9:05 a.m. to the Charles H. McEvoy Educational Center on Route 13, police said. Arriving students, including a group from Fabius-Pompey School District, were held on their buses for two hours as police secured the area.

The lockdowns started after a bus driver heard students talking about a bomb on the bus while driving to BOCES, sheriff’s Capt. Chad Burhans said. The driver notified authorities.

SUNY Cortland’s University Police Department, and its bomb-sniffing police dog, Red, investigated the bus, Burhans said. No bomb was found.

“The juvenile who made the statement has been identified and also confirmed that there was no threat to the bus or school,” Burhans said.

Both schools resumed their activities after police determined the threat was unfounded, officials said. The high school has 639 students as of June 30, state data show. Information on the number of students at the McEvoy campus was unavailable.

Burhans declined to say whether the child would be charged. “The investigation at this time is still open,” he said.

Police were also at Cortland High School because of “a threat made by a student who attends the OCM BOCES Cortlandville McEvoy Campus,” states a news release from Cortland High School Principal Joseph Mack.

Cortland Superintendent Robert Edwards could not be reached.

Cortlandville firefighters and Cortland police assisted the sheriff’s office at the McEvoy campus.