Former coach turned sheriff says 'shut up and talk to your kids'
NORTH BRANCH, Mich. -- Since three Lapeer School district teens plotted a mass murder at a middle school, the Lapeer County Sheriff is going into action.
He's meeting with students throughout the district to talk about warning signs and consequences.
One of the things the sheriff told students at North Branch High School is for parents to have a real, adult conversation with their kids.
Sheriff Scott McKenna is a former baseball and football coach.
Sheriff McKenna says, "Guys gals when you post something on your phone... this is where you cringe a little bit and hope mom and dad don't hear this... it never goes away, never, ever, ever, ever, ever. "
These high school students learned a simple way to prevent more school threats, "talk."
"How many of you are scared, raise your hand?"
After the Florida school shooting, many school districts received threats. Lapeer Schools received ten threats.
Sheriff McKenna is having a frank discussion with students, not only about threats but also things like sexting and social media. students asked questions.
One student asked, "How do we get people to change their attitude towards things like threats to the school and to our peers?"
Others shared personal experiences.
Dylan Friday, a senior at the school says, "It's expected of me to just be smart and especially being an athlete I know if I get in trouble with any of that there are serious consequences."
Some of it was directed to the parents.
Sheriff McKenna says, "Sometimes as adults, we need to shut up and listen to our kids. the kids live it".
McKenna calls the 13-year-old girl who told her mom about the Zemmer Middle School threat, "a hero."
He says she saved lives.
As for the parents, they're urged to meet with the sheriff for a similar talk on Sunday, March 18 at North Branch High School.