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Anti-transgender bomb threat targets Greece Arcadia High School

The mascot for the Greece Arcadia Titans.
Photo provided
The mascot for the Greece Arcadia Titans.

Greece Arcadia High and Middle schools were briefly evacuated Friday after the district received a transphobic, homophobic threat to bomb the school.

The threat, which was loaded with profanity and slurs, was originally sent to WROC Channel 8 just after 6 a.m. Staff there called 911 and forwarded the message to Greece school district officials. Both of the schools were subsequently evacuated but were able to resume their days at 9 a.m. and 10 a.m., respectively. That was after Greece police searched the schools with dogs.

Greece schools Superintendent Kathleen Graupman said to her, the threat qualified as a hate crime.

“It is the exact opposite of what we do in schools, it is the exact opposite of what Greece Central believes in terms of what we teach, and how we behave, and how we conduct ourselves,” she said.

The threat referenced a fight that happened in a girls’ bathroom in February. A video of the fight has been circulating on social media, and one account that reposted it referenced the gender identity of one of the students.

Graupman said the fight was "significant and very, very upsetting and disturbing,” and that the district swiftly dealt with it. She also said that the students were minors and that she couldn’t release identifying information, including the gender identity of the student in question.

“It is clear that this is being used for an agenda,” Graupman said. “Whether that'd be a personal or political agenda, it is being used.”

Schools across the country have been dealing with anti-transgender bomb threats. Last March, the Hilton school district received a threat that referenced a young adult nonfiction book on sexuality and gender, “This Book is Gay.”

Jeremy Moule is a deputy editor with WXXI News. He also covers Monroe County.