Threatening letter prompts evacuation of Paradise Honors High School

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(Source: Paradise Honors High School) (Source: Paradise Honors High School)

The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office confirmed that it evacuated Paradise Honors High School in Surprise for a time Thursday afternoon "in the interest of school safety."

Few details were immediately available, but according to MCSO spokesman Sgt. Calbert Gillett, the school found a threatening letter.

"No one was injured and all personnel have been evacuated at this time," Gillett wrote in an email response to our inquiries. "MCSO takes these types of threats seriously."

"We deem all threats as serious until proven otherwise," Tim Gonzales, the executive director of Paradise Schools, agreed, explaining that the schools' "protocols always error on the side of caution."

The contents of the note have not been disclosed.

"Numerous deputies and K9 units conducted an extremely thorough and extensive search," Gonzales said. "Thankfully the search yielded no weapons, explosives, or foreign items of any kind and the threat was determined to be a hoax."

Gonzales said Paradise Schools will investigate the situation and "disciplinary actions will be administered to any student found to be involved."

Founded in 1998, Paradise Schools is made up of a kindergarten through fifth-grade elementary school, a grades six-eight middle school and the grades nine-12 high school. Together the schools serve about 1,800 students.

Paradise Honors High School is located on 175th Avenue north of Cactus Road.

This is the second threat against an Arizona high school Thursday.

An Amphitheater High School student in Tucson was arrested in connection with an alleged threat made against the school via social media.

[READ MORE: Threat made against high school; Tucson student arrested]

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