BARTOW, Fla. - Two girls -- ages 11 and 12 -- took knives to a Polk County middle school Tuesday in a Satanic plot to kill their classmates, according to authorities.
Police said the attack was thwarted at Bartow Middle School after officials learned of the plot.
Bartow Police Chief Joe Hall said investigators searched the girls, who were found hiding in a bathroom during class time, and found several knives, including a butcher knife.
Detectives said the girls told them they were practicing Satanists and they had been planning an attack on other students for the past couple of days.
The girls said they wanted to kill at least 15 people and were waiting for the opportunity to find smaller kids so they could overpower them, according to police.
"They told us they were Satan worshipers. They did make comments that they were willing to drink blood and possibly eat flesh," Hall said.
Detectives said both girls posted information about the attack on social media and messages on the girls' cellphones stated that they wanted to leave body parts at the school entrance before killing themselves.
No one was injured.
The girls face several charges, including conspiracy to commit murder.
Bartow School Superintendent Jackie Byrd thanked teachers and administrators for saying something when they heard about the threat.
Parents were sent a message Wednesday about the incident.
This message is being sent on behalf of Bartow Middle.
All students and staff are safe.
This is an update to a message that was sent yesterday afternoon.
Two Bartow Middle students have been arrested after bringing knives on campus.
The Bartow Police Department’s investigation indicates these students were planning to attack students.
Fortunately, they were discovered by school staff hiding in a bathroom during class time and were taken into custody without incident.
We understand this news can be upsetting. A team of counselors is available at the school to assist any employees and students. They will remain on site as long as they are needed.
We continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners, and we are assisting with their investigation. We greatly appreciate their help.
You may see more law enforcement officers on campus today and throughout the week. Rest assured that the campus is safe for students and staff. School operations are expected to proceed as normal.
This extra law enforcement presence is being done in an abundance of caution and to maintain a sense of calm on the campus.
The safety of our students, staff and their families is and always will be our first priority. Thank you.
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