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Council Bluffs teacher arrested for ‘threatening notes’ found at Abraham Lincoln High School

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A Council Bluffs teacher is under arrest accused of leaving a series of threatening notes around school referencing gun violence. Council Bluffs police said an investigation into a series of anonymous handwritten notes led them to Abraham Lincoln High School teacher Katrina Phelan, 37. Police said all the notes referenced committing gun violence on school property and were found in Phelan’s classroom, or a girl’s restroom.According to police in an affidavit, all four notes in question were either found and recovered by students in Phelan’s classroom or by Phelan herself.The affidavit says Phelan admitted to writing three of the notes and said they were written on paper from her classroom. Police said she confirmed the handwriting on the note was hers, but couldn’t recall writing them. The affidavit also states that when asked why she was writing these notes, Phelan responded by saying ‘it was out of concern, worry, and frustration over the lack of control of her classroom.’When asked what she hoped to accomplish by writing these notes, investigators said Phelan told them maybe to bring attention to the fact that it’s ‘not a safe place.’Investigators said they determined Phelan had no intentions or means of carrying out the threats. They describe one note posing as an unnamed student who said they were tired of being made fun of. Phelan faces charges of Threats of Terrorism. The three counts are Class D felonies, punishable by up to 5 years in prison. Parents said they do feel safe sending their children to school.”I feel very reassured that they’re doing the right things and it’s swift and taken care of and things are being done appropriately,” said parent Kelli Blair.Others are confused about the situation.”If its a kid you can kind of.. their brain’s not grown yet, but for an adult to do such a think I just can’t even, it’s incredible,” said a grandparent.The following email was sent to ALHS parents: The Council Bluffs Police Department has concluded its investigation into the threatening notes found at school a few weeks ago. They have determined the source of the notes to be a school employee. Investigators concluded there was no intent or means to carry out the threats. However, the employee has been charged with a crime, has voluntarily surrendered to the police, and will no longer be employed by the Council Bluffs Schools. We appreciate the detectives and their diligence in solving this crime.During that investigation, students provided us with information that was helpful. This is what we expect from students at ALHS.We want all students, parents and staff members to have confidence that our schools are safe and supportive environments.Mrs. Bellows, Principal

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A Council Bluffs teacher is under arrest accused of leaving a series of threatening notes around school referencing gun violence.

Council Bluffs police said an investigation into a series of anonymous handwritten notes led them to Abraham Lincoln High School teacher Katrina Phelan, 37. Police said all the notes referenced committing gun violence on school property and were found in Phelan’s classroom, or a girl’s restroom.

According to police in an affidavit, all four notes in question were either found and recovered by students in Phelan’s classroom or by Phelan herself.

The affidavit says Phelan admitted to writing three of the notes and said they were written on paper from her classroom. Police said she confirmed the handwriting on the note was hers, but couldn’t recall writing them.

The affidavit also states that when asked why she was writing these notes, Phelan responded by saying ‘it was out of concern, worry, and frustration over the lack of control of her classroom.’

When asked what she hoped to accomplish by writing these notes, investigators said Phelan told them maybe to bring attention to the fact that it’s ‘not a safe place.’

Investigators said they determined Phelan had no intentions or means of carrying out the threats. They describe one note posing as an unnamed student who said they were tired of being made fun of.

Phelan faces charges of Threats of Terrorism. The three counts are Class D felonies, punishable by up to 5 years in prison.

Parents said they do feel safe sending their children to school.

“I feel very reassured that they’re doing the right things and it’s swift and taken care of and things are being done appropriately,” said parent Kelli Blair.

Others are confused about the situation.

“If its a kid you can kind of.. their brain’s not grown yet, but for an adult to do such a think I just can’t even, it’s incredible,” said a grandparent.

The following email was sent to ALHS parents:

The Council Bluffs Police Department has concluded its investigation into the threatening notes found at school a few weeks ago. They have determined the source of the notes to be a school employee. Investigators concluded there was no intent or means to carry out the threats. However, the employee has been charged with a crime, has voluntarily surrendered to the police, and will no longer be employed by the Council Bluffs Schools. We appreciate the detectives and their diligence in solving this crime.

During that investigation, students provided us with information that was helpful. This is what we expect from students at ALHS.

We want all students, parents and staff members to have confidence that our schools are safe and supportive environments.

Mrs. Bellows, Principal



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