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Bomb Threat Look-Alike In District 34

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Valerie Rasmussen

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After a “grenade” was found on bus, driver is on unpaid leave.

According to NBC Chicago and the Daily Herald, District 34 bus driver Kevin Garfinkle is on unpaid leave after one of the students on his bus was said to have a grenade inside of their backpack. On January 11, other students on the bus had told Garfinkle that another student had the explosive with them. Stepping into action, Garfinkle got the device and delivered it to an employee of the school. It was later determined that although it looked and felt real, it was nothing more than a replica. With school shootings on the rise, this threat quickly could have escalated into another tragedy. According to both articles, on January 18, he was given a letter stating that he was suspended for insubordination. Sophomore Kaylee Griffin doesn’t agree with the school’s decision.

“I don’t understand, why is he on unpaid leave; he didn’t do anything wrong,” Griffin said. “He did what he had the ability to do.”

Much controversy follows as many like Griffin feel as though Garfinkle did nothing wrong and instead feel the school was at fault. They failed to inform students and parents until days after the incident had occurred. What happened on the bus and thereafter is still being reviewed by school officials and nothing has been completely determined as the investigation continues.

Garfinkle’s son, Josh, was contacted for this story. Due to the ongoing investigation, J. Garfinkle was unable to provide a quote or comment for this article.

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Bomb Threat Look-Alike In District 34