KINGSTON (CBS) – Students at Sacred Heart High School in Kingston were evacuated because of a suspicious device, but police say it was all a hoax.

A science teacher discovered the suspicious looking device in a lab Monday morning.

“She had picked it up wondering what it was, and realized ‘maybe it was something I shouldn’t be handling’, took it away, separated it from the students, and immediately called me down,” Principal Dr. Michael Gill said.

The principal immediately called Kingston Police.

“It was a device that met the definition of incendiary device. I don’t want to give out too much details about what the device looked like,” said Kingston Police Chief Maurice Splaine.

Police first called for a partial evacuation of the rooms around the science lab, then after the State Police bomb squad arrived, they decided to make all the students get out.

The chief says the State Police were able to disconnect power from the device, while some students were sheltered in the nearby athletic center.

“They were contacting their parents via cell phone, next thing we know we have parents showing up at the door before we could even release a statement,” Dr. Gill said.

“I don’t think we were informed enough,” Neda Kalhori, a mother of a 10th grader at Sacred Heart said. “We don’t know what the protocols are, and today was clear to me that no one knew what they were doing.”

“There’s always going to be people who think we overreacted or we didn’t do enough, they don’t understand once we call police they take over and they tell us what to do,” the principal said.

Police say the evacuation was orderly and no other suspicious devices were found.


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