19 Volusia students arrested for threats since Parkland school shooting

Teen overheard making threat at River Springs Middle School, deputies say


ORANGE CITY, Fla. – A 15-year-old middle school student was arrested Wednesday night on suspicion of making a school threat, the 19th student charged by the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office since the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

The seventh-grader at River Springs Middle School in Orange City was arrested at home after another student overheard him saying, “It would be funny to shoot up the school," according to officials. The student to whom he was talking said, “I’m down,” and they began laughing, deputies said.

The witness reported the incident to school staff members and posted a warning on Instagram, informing students about a possible school shooting threat, deputies said.

A Volusia County sheriff’s deputy interviewed the teen and the boy's mother at their home, and charged the teen with making a threat to discharge a destructive device, a felony. The teen was taken to the Department of Juvenile Justice.

Volusia County Sheriff Mike Chitwood said his agency has zero tolerance for threats and jokes about shootings, bombings and other acts of violence. Anyone who continues to make such statements will face criminal charges and defendants or their families will be held responsible for the cost of the Sheriff’s Office’s response to their cases.

"Parents, please help us keep your children and the community safe by discouraging this behavior," the Sheriff's Office said in a statement. "We encourage all parents to talk to their children about the seriousness of making false reports at school or on social media."

It's not known if the student who said, "I'm down," upon hearing the school threat faces any charges.

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