Memphis police respond to call saying parent made violent threats at school

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Faculty members at an elementary school are accusing one parent of threatening to blow up the school after the car pick-up line was too long.

It happened at Power Center Academy Elementary School Tuesday afternoon in Hickory Hill, and police say the principal asked for extra security on Wednesday because of it.

“He’s frustrated, we’re frustrated, and he’s just trying to have an attitude," said Courtney Brown, the one accused of making the threats.

That’s what parent Brown had to say about a disturbance at Power Center Academy Elementary. Memphis police say they got a call Tuesday saying Brown made violent threats at the school.

“That disturbs me a lot," said one parent on Wednesday.

The police report says Brown was upset after waiting in a long line to pick up his son and got into an argument with faculty.

It says he told the assistant principal if the pick-up line didn’t get better, he’d shoot everyone, blow up the place and "catch a charge."

“I said nothing about no school, no blowing up, no shooting, none of the above," said Brown.

He said he did exchange heated words with the assistant principal after waiting for half an hour but says the rest is untrue.

“And this is my first time hearing anything about this," said Brown.

The school released the following statement:

"Yesterday during dismissal, one of our school administrators was confronted by a frustrated parent in regards to the flow of our car-rider line. During this conversation, threatening comments were made towards our PCAES family. Please know that our staff immediately took the appropriate action steps to ensure the safety and well-being of everyone in the vicinity. The safety of our families (scholar and staff) always our number one priority. We commend our staff for their swift actions to contact the authorities and put the safety of our scholars first."

“The long is long, but you have to realize there are so many kids to go to school, and if you don’t have the patience to wait to pick up your child, maybe you need to wait to take them somewhere else," said Linda Patrick, grandmother of a student.

Although some parents said the lines can seem pretty long some days, they said they appreciate how thorough the staff is in getting their kids to the cars safely and said it’s a pretty quick process after that.

“The school is wonderful and I don’t mind sitting a little extra five or six minutes or whatever to make sure my grandchild is getting a good education," said Patrick.

The police report also said the principal requested an extra police presence for Wednesday. WREG crew didn’t see any officers out there but did notice staff members in the parking lots.

Brown said he’s working the issues out with the principal.