Reading High School senior arrested for school threat

Reading High School
Reading High School

READING — A Reading High School senior was arrested Saturday, Feb. 4, for intentionally communicating a threat against the school.

Joshua Aaron Wade Dobbs, 18, was arraigned Monday, Feb. 6, in 2B District Court on the misdemeanor offense, where bond was set at $20,000 with 10-percent allowed.

His arrest stemmed from a threat brought forward to school staff by another student in the late afternoon hours of Friday, Feb. 3; two days after Jonesville Community Schools went into a hard lockdown and dismissed school early in the face of its own threat from a 14-year-old student.

More:Jonesville police arrest student behind Wednesday's school threat

“The school contacted us about a threat, and we launched an investigation leading us to Dobbs,” Reading Police Chief Eric Stolberg said. “He said it was just in a joking manner but it’s nothing we joke about in today’s society; we take it very seriously and so does the school.”

Stolberg added that Sgt. Rob Cooley, the investigating officer, did not find a weapon in Dobbs’ possession nor in his bedroom and that during the interview police received information leading them to believe the threat was credible.

Dobbs is tentatively scheduled to appear back in 2B District Court for a pretrial conference at 2 p.m. Feb. 21 and faces up to one year in jail if convicted as charged.

Judge Megan Stiverson ordered him to be on a GPS monitoring device and to not have contact with the school if he were able to post bond. He must also not possess any form of a weapon nor be in a home where weapons are present.

Stolberg said Reading Community Schools have been subjected to a number of threats since the Oxford School Shooting on Nov. 30, 2021, and the community was recently awarded grant money to help offset costs of a school resource officer.

In the meantime, Stolberg and Cooley, Reading’s only two police officers, have made frequent visits to Reading’s schools during their normal patrol duties.

“It’s something Rob (Cooley) and I really support, the city supports, and the community supports,” Stolberg said.

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Reading Community Schools did not immediately return a call requesting comment Monday, Feb. 6.

Jonesville Community Schools Superintendent Erik Weatherwax pointed to preparations and protocols for addressing threats as a safeguard for students and faculty alike in the aftermath of threats in his own district.

“You can’t prevent those types of threats,” Weatherwax said. “You just have to be sure that you’re responding to them as a real threat and following your protocols which everyone did. Unfortunately, this is just a part of school now, but you have to take every threat seriously. There can be no days off.”

— Corey Murray is the Public Safety Reporter for The Hillsdale Daily News, Sturgis Journal and The Daily Reporter. Contact him by email at or follow him on Twitter: @cmurrayHDN.

This article originally appeared on Hillsdale Daily News: Reading High School senior arrested for school threat