Fourth-grade students in Elba, New York were suspended after plotting to kill their teacher with hand sanitizer.
The three girls from Elba Elementary School discovered that their teacher was severely allergic to hand sanitizer, and then used the information in a plot to put the sanitizer on objects the teacher would most likely touch. Deputies say the girls told their classmates they were planning to “kill” their teacher by doing that, writes Hilary Hanson for The Huffington Post.
The teacher had told her class that the sanitizer could make her very ill and was not allowed in the classroom, but it is not clear whether that illness could be fatal. However, the students believed the sanitizer could be used to kill their teacher.
In an interview with youth officers, one of the girls said the teacher “yells at us” and “the class has problems with her.” Another student suggested that the plot to poison their teacher was thought of by another child. In the end, no actual attempts were made on the teacher’s life. It was all talk.
The girls never followed through with their plan, which was discovered in mid-December by a board member who heard of the plan from her son. The member then notified the police.
The report, provided by the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department, said, “the suspects made comments to other students that they were going to kill [the teacher] by putting antibacterial products around the classroom.”
The report went on to say that the students interviewed produced contradictory statements concerning the threats and who made them.
While no clear motive was found, the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department report suggested that bullying was taking place in the classroom, and that the students “had problems working together.”
The Genesee County Sheriff announced this week that the case has been closed, as authorities have found no crime to have been committed. The school is now handling the case, writes Erica Brecher for WGRZ.
While the students are not facing any criminal charges, two of the girls have been suspended after school officials say they implicated themselves in statements given to the youth officers.
In a statement released this week, the Elba School District said:
“The District does not condone any of the behaviors that have been reported and is in the process of working alongside the Sheriff’s Department to use this incident as a vehicle for educating the District’s students regarding appropriate behaviors.”