Several guns were found at the teen’s home, police said.
California police said they may have prevented another school tragedy after arresting a 15-year-old boy who threatened his Fresno high school on Instagram and finding a cache of weapons hidden at his home.
The San Joaquin Memorial High School sophomore posted the threat Monday with lyrics from Eminem songs referencing the 1999 Columbine shooting, forcing the school to close Tuesday, Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said.
“I take seven kids from Columbine, stand ’em all in a line, add an AK-47, a revolver, a nine, a MAC-11 and it oughtta solve the problem of mine,” the post said.
“And that’s a whole school of bullies shot up all at one time. I’m just like Shady and just as crazy as the world was over this whole Y2K thing.”
Another student, who was being questioned by police, commented, “Bring me with man. I got some stuff (to) settle.”
“I’ll text you when k,” the first student reportedly replied with a thumbs-up emoji. “I got a couple of idiots’ blocks I could knock off.”
The post, which referenced the songs “I’m Back” and “Rap God,” circulated among students before the school reported it to authorities. Police did not say what picture accompanied the text.
A search of the boy’s home, with the father’s consent, unearthed a handgun, a .357 Magnum revolver, a 12-gauge shotgun, ammunition and a bulletproof vest, all of which had been hidden under the floor of a closet, Dyer said. Police also found an Airsoft AK-47 gun.
“We certainly believe there was a potential for a threat to be carried out,” Dyer told a news conference Tuesday. “I’m very relieved that nothing bad happened in our community.”
None of the firearms were registered, although the father and son denied knowledge of them, police said.
The father could be charged with “negligent storage” of firearms because a restraining order against him prohibits him from owning guns, Dyer said without detailing the order.
The boy, who was not named because of his age, was taken for a mental health evaluation and was set to be booked afterwards on felony charges of making terrorist threats and disrupting school activity, Dyer said.
Dyer described the teen as a socially awkward loner who had a rough year: his mom died, he broke up with his girlfriend and he quit the football team. He noted those are characteristics typically held by school shooters.
“We have every reason to believe that he was reaching out for help,” Dyer said. “The weapons were present. The ammunition was present. Perhaps even the mindset was present to carry out those threats.”
Linden Lindahl, the boy’s attorney, said the teen didn’t post the threatening message and his computer was possibly hacked, according to the Fresno Bee.
Lindahl denied the teen was depressed or bullied and said he had only had a “tiff” with his girlfriend, not a breakup. He also noted the airsoft gun had a bright orange tip, marking it as fake.
“His family describes him as a quiet kid with a circle of six to seven friends,” Lindahl said.
San Joaquin and St Anthony’s — a Catholic school the teen used to attend — were closed Tuesday and scheduled to reopen Wednesday.
The boy previously got into trouble at St Anthony’s over social media posts,NBC reported.