- Associated Press - Monday, October 27, 2014

REXBURG, Idaho (AP) - A social networking site on which a 19-year-old man threatened a school shooting at Brigham Young University-Idaho was just a bad joke, authorities in southeastern Idaho said.

Rexburg police Capt. Randy Lewis said the student made the post at about noon Sunday on a site called Yik Yak and expected software to prevent it from posting, but it went through.

The post to “shoot up BYU-I” was then reposted by someone else as a screenshot on Twitter, and from there it quickly spread.

“He made the first attempt to contact us when he found out when it went crazy,” said Lewis, noting social networking sites, including the police department’s, started lighting up.

Lewis said the student was taken into custody at about 1 p.m. Sunday and questioned at the Rexburg police station before being released. Lewis said the incident was considered concluded at 4:30 p.m.

“It was stupid. I don’t know how else to describe it,” Lewis said of the post made by the student, who is from California. “It’s a very serious type deal, whether his intentions were innocent. It’s very serious and we’re treating it that way.”

Lewis said the Madison County prosecutor’s office is investigating.

The Rexburg Police Department, attempting to update the situation Sunday on its Facebook page, reported having interviewed the student and determining there was no threat, with the incident simply “a bad joke.”

“The police did describe it as a joke,” said Marc Stevens, BYU-Idaho spokesman. “Obviously, we didn’t find it to be a joke.”

He said officials at the school were waiting for authorities to complete their investigation before the school makes any disciplinary decisions.

“There will undoubtedly be repercussions for this student,” Stevens said. “What they are, we don’t know.”

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