Three Jasper County Bomb Threat Suspects at Lincoln's Challenge


Published on January 14 2013 3:18 pm
Last Updated on July 14 2013 12:07 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

The three students accused of phoning in a bomb threat to Newton Community High School have begun serving a term in the alternative sentencing program known as Lincoln's Challenge.

The 17-year-old and two 16-year-olds were charged with phoning in the threat on November 5.  The threat resulted in a full evacuation of the high school.

Jasper County State's Attorney Kevin Parker Monday said the three youths began serving at Lincoln's Challenge last week.  Parker said the Jasper County charges against the three were dismissed but, if the youths don't successfully complete the program, they could be re-filed.

Parker said the Rantoul-based Lincoln's Challenge is operated by the Illinois National Guard and is like a military boot camp; uniforms, haircuts, physical training and work to complete their GEDs.  He said obtaining their GEDs is a requirement to successfully complete Lincoln's Challenge, along with learning various life skills during the 17-month program.

Parker acknowledged that the 17-year-old defendant had been charged as an adult, but said he is only a few months older than the 16-year-olds and "should get the same chance" as the younger defendants.

The three students had earlier been disciplined by the Jasper school district.