2 teens arrested after small explosion on Hilo campus

Big Island police say around 11:30 a.m., there was a small explosion at Hilo High School in an open corridor outside the auditorium.

There were students inside the auditorium, but no one was hurt.

Police officers found a plastic container with some liquid chemicals inside, believed to be the remnants of the explosive device.

The school then went into lockdown as police officers and firefighters swept the campus looking for other explosives. No other explosives were found.

The principal says the school went into what’s known as bomb scare protocol as soon as the explosion was heard.

“After you secure the area, you notify 911 and you go to lockdown. So we went to lockdown within five minutes of that initial explosion,” Hilo High School Principal Robert Dircks said.

“My parents got a text from the school saying what happened,” said Sierra, ninth grade student.  “They were worried. They told me just to stay calm. My mom and dad texted me.”

“As far as any responsible individuals, we’ll be talking to students that may assist us in solving this case,” Hawaii County Police Department Lt. Gregory Esteban said.

The two students arrested are 16-year-old boys. They were booked on suspicion of first degree terroristic threatening, which is a Class C felony.

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