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Sumter teens accused of school shooting plot to remain in juvenile detention

13-, 14-year-old planned attack on Villages Charter School, deputies say

SUMTER COUNTY, Fla. – Two Sumter County teens charged in a school shooting plot appeared before two different judges Tuesday at the Sumter County Courthouse for detention hearings.

Zachary Shearon, 13, and Richard Hummer, 14, are accused of planning an attack on The Villages Charter School, according to the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office.

Both teens are charged with conspiracy to commit murder.

The state asked for a nine-day detention extension for Shearon, which was was granted during his appearance before a judge Tuesday morning, citing an ongoing investigation.

Shearon’s attorney Jody Fisher asked the judge to deny media from recording her client because of his age. The judge granted that request.

[PHOTOS: Attack planned at school in The Villages]

A separate judge also granted a detention extension for Hummer in a 2:30 p.m. appearance.

His defense attorney, Ken Lewis, told News 6 that he felt the detention meeting went well.

Lewis said that the state attorney's office is doing a thorough investigation, which he said is needed in this case. 

"When you look at the age here, the level of maturity, the fact that this was basically a conversation, the fact that you have a tremendous amount immaturity and peer pressure in junior high school I'm very confident that the state attorney will do the right thing and not consider direct filing," Lewis said.

Sumter deputies said rumors about a shooting began circulating in late January. Shearon was questioned as he arrived at school Wednesday and told deputies that he and another boy had talked about the plot. When Hummer was questioned, he mentioned the 1999 Columbine shooting that killed 12 students and a teacher at the Colorado high school.

More than 500 students were absent from the Villages Charter School the day after the teens' arrests.

Lewis said his client is not good friends with Shearon.

He said the two have only interacted at school and have never spent time together outside of school. 

​"They're school friends,” Lewis said. “As many people in eighth grade would have friends, you know, you could say everyone in my class is my friend. They talk. They have never seen each other outside of school, ever, in their entire lives.”

Sumter County officials said no weapons were found on either of the students, nor in their bags or lockers. They were both arrested at their homes during the execution of search warrants. Deputies said loaded firearms were recovered at both their homes during the search.

"Our client, Mr. Hummer, has never handled a fire arm in his life, and that these people had absolutely nothing to do with each other except for Mr. Hummer being the recipient of several emails and social media correspondence from the other children," Lewis said. 

Both middle school students will remain in the Marion County Juvenile Detention Center until they appear before a judge again on Feb. 27.

Watch News 6 tonight for more on this story and follow ongoing coverage on ClickOrlando.com.


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