ALTAMONTE SPRINGS, Fla. – Lake Brantley High School students who received a Snapchat video Friday told Altamonte Springs police they thought a student was holding another student hostage with a gun on campus.
Two 14-year-old girls and a 17-year-old girl were arrested Friday after Altamonte Springs police say the teens brought an airsoft gun on campus and filmed a 1-second video showing one student sitting on the ground while another held the faux weapon above her head. According to the arrest report released Monday, the students circulated the video on social media scaring their classmates.
The incident triggered a code red lockdown and a large law enforcement officer response on the same day Florida marked two years after 17 were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.
“The images that circulated among students was recognizable as being on the school campus because of the background,” the arrest report said. “Additionally, being the two year anniversary of the Marjorie Stoneman Douglas Shooting and the increasing existence of school violence, this lead students and administrators to believe that there was potentially an active threat on school campus.”
The report described frantic parents rushing to the school and how police and deputies quickly worked to identify the students involved.
Students told police they began seeing the video as early as 6:50 a.m.
One student told police she went to the bathroom around 6:50 a.m. where she saw one of the teens involved and she saw a picture of a gun on a phone. The suspect told the other student it was not loaded, according to the report.
A student reported the video to school administration, after seeing it at 7:20 a.m. and thinking it was a real threat, according to the report. That report triggered the code red, police said.
“He then showed the video to his friend and they both decided to report it to his teacher because they thought it was serious that a student had a gun on school property,” the report said.
The report was redacted and did not say which teen was found with the airsoft gun.
One of the students who authorities believed had the weapon was escorted out of a classroom by three law enforcement officers and handcuffed.
All three teens are charged with writing a threat to kill or injure, possession of a weapon on school property, obstruction of a criminal investigation and disturbing the peace.