Student arrested for making online threat

Posted

A 14-year-old Hillcrest Middle School student was taken into custody today after he reportedly threatened to "shoot up" the school.

He will be petitioned to Family Court on charges, which include disturbing schools, aggravated breach of peace and threatening the life of a public employee, principal or teacher. He has been released to the custody of his parents, pending adjudication.

The Instagram post quickly spread during the night on Monday and by Tuesday morning, parents questioned whether to allow their students to attend school.

Sumter County authorities acted quickly to determine whether the threat was credible. Deputies patrolled the halls and investigators questioned several students who had responded to the post.

Just after noon, investigators were able to determine that the male student had sent the threat.

The boy has no criminal history and was not a problem student.

"We are glad we were able to quickly determine who sent the message," said Sumter County Sheriff Anthony Dennis. "We thank the principal and administrators at Hillcrest for aiding us today. Although this appears to have been a prank, we have to take these calls seriously. Unfortunately, this young man made a decision that may result in serious charges. We are just glad no one was hurt."