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The Latest: Student: Confederate flag theft sparked protests

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Students demonstrate in support of a Bay City Western High School student, who claims his Confederate flag was torn from his truck last week, Wednesday, April 18 2018, in Auburn, Mich. (Jacob Hamilton/The Bay City Times via AP)

AUBURN, Mich. (AP) — The Latest on Confederate flag demonstrations outside of a Michigan high school (all times local):

5:10 p.m.

A student who led a two-day demonstration outside of his central Michigan high school this week says it was in response to the unpunished theft of a Confederate battle flag from his pickup truck.

Cameron Myers, an 18-year-old senior at Bay City Western High School, told The Associated Press on Thursday that he complained to school officials that someone had cut the large Confederate flag from a pole on his truck, but no one was disciplined. He then took to friends on social media, asking them to fly their own flags outside the school.

After two days of protests by Myers and his friends, who were met Wednesday by counter-protesters waving rainbow flags and anti-racism placards, classes were canceled Thursday due to an unspecified threat.

Myers says he's not racist and his demonstration shouldn't be seen as such.

His grandmother, Lynn Boyce, says everything has been "blown out of proportion." She also says her grandson and his friends won't be continuing the protest Friday.

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9 a.m.

Officials say a potential threat has forced the closure of a central Michigan high school where students parked their pickup trucks adorned with Confederate flags outside for two days.

Bay City Public Schools Superintendent Stephen Bigelow tells The Bay City Times he has canceled classes Thursday at Bay City Western High after being informed about rumors that people planned to confront students.

WJRT-TV reports Bigelow said in a message to parents that the "unsubstantiated" rumors involved threats from outside the school district.

Six trucks flying or painted with the Confederate battle flag parked outside of the school on Tuesday and were joined by others on Wednesday, when they were met by a counter-demonstration against racism and bigotry.

The school is in Auburn, about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northwest of Detroit.