BETHLEHEM – 500 students and employees were evacuated this morning after a bomb threat was found at Bethlehem School.

Holmes County Sheriff’s Office received a call at approximately 9:40 a.m. on February 8, regarding a bomb threat that was found by a student in a boy’s bathroom stall in the middle school area.

The message read, “Bomb at school 12:00.”

The student reported the threat to administrators who immediately assumed the district’s protocol for a bomb threat.

HCSO was notified and the School Resource Officer and staff immediately began evacuating students to Carmel Assembly of God Church just down from the school. All students and staff were relocated by 10:24 a.m.

Investigators began reviewing cameras and interviewing staff and students to try and determine the author of the message.

Dothan Police Department and Bay County Sheriff’s Office were contacted and each dispatched bomb sniffing K-9’s to comb every inch of the school to include buses.

The school was cleared by 12:40 p.m.

Holmes County Sheriff John Tate would like to commend the staff of both the Sheriff’s Office and the Holmes District School Board for their effective response to today’s incident.

Tate would also like to thank all the emergency personnel that responded as well as the Bay County Sheriff’s Office and Dothan Police Dept.

The investigation is ongoing.