HACKENSACK — A Garfield man is charged with making a false threat against a Hackensack school amid a string of similar calls during the last three months of the school year.

Christopher Vitone, 38, is accused of calling in a threat to one of the city's schools on June 16. He was arrested on July 7 at his job where he works as a stock clerk, according to Hackensack police Det. Capt. Michael Antista.

Antista said police and the local board of education received a series of calls between March and June of this year. The calls made fake threats targeting schools throughout Hackensack and nearby homes.

Hackensack High School was evacuated on March 4 and other schools were made to shelter in place. Then on March 30, all schools in the city were put under a shelter-in-place order.

Harold Bloom Bridge at Hackensack High School. (Google Maps)
Harold Bloom Bridge at Hackensack High School. (Google Maps)

Schools then went into lockdown again in early May after SWAT was called to a Hackensack home, The Daily Voice reported. The outlet said more than a dozen false alarms were called in over the three month period.

An investigation is ongoing into how many of these calls may have been made by Vitone. He is charged with one count each of false public alarm and making a false report.

Rick Rickman is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at richard.rickman@townsquaremedia.com

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