Push to revoke driver’s licenses for school threats

RUTHERFORD COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — The school threats were constant in Rutherford County Schools when News 2 spoke to Safety Director Patty Oeser back in November 2022.

“We had one a couple of weeks ago that came from another school system,” said Tammy Sharp.

Sharp, who serves as a school board member for Rutherford County Schools, said despite a new school year, the threats haven’t slowed down.

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“We’re just at the point and time where we cannot…not investigate it,” she said.

So to combat this problem, Sharp began talking with State Rep. Robert Stevens (R-Smyrna).

“It has to be something that’s going to say, ‘Hey, we’re going to take one of your privileges away if you do this,'” she said. “So he was the one that came up…he goes, ‘Let’s tie it to their driver’s license.'”

At the Oct. 26 school board meeting, board members will consider asking the state legislature for a new law to revoke the driver’s licenses of those who make school threats.

“I think if we can start it at the level where it’s just a hoax or something like that, they can see the seriousness of it,” said Sharp.

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Grandparent Curtis Shriver is open to the idea, but does have questions.

“How long would the license be revoked?” he asked. “Would it be until they graduate high school? Would it be the current school year?”

He also wonders if this would be enough to stop students from making school threats.

“You still have the small minority that’s just going to say they don’t care because they don’t want to live by society, and that’s seen with regular laws,” he said.

Sharp said there’s still a lot to work out, but hopes this resolution could be a start in reducing the number of threats made at schools.

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“I hope if it would deter one person from doing it, that saves us that trauma from that event from that day,” she said.

Sharp said she’s looking to bring this resolution up to the county commissioners and the Tennessee School Board Association as well.

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