More violence, weapons reported in schools
LOS ANGELES (AP) – Authorities arrested seven California students at three schools for allegedly making violent threats that included a plot to put a bomb on a teacher’s desk and the creation of a hit list.
In the desert town of Twentynine Palms, two 17-year-old boys at Monument High School were arrested Tuesday night on suspicion to conspiracy to commit murder and civil rights violations.
Deputies found a .22-caliber rifle at one home. At the other, there was a list with the names of 16 area high school students they planned to target, San Bernardino County Sheriff’s spokesman Chip Patterson said. The teens’ motives were unknown, and investigators began interviewing the students on the list, he said.
Police were tipped off by a classmate who told her father she had overheard the students talking about their hit list during the past two weeks, Patterson said. She came forward after a student opened fire Monday on a high school campus in San Diego County, killing two students and wounding 13.
Also Tuesday, three junior high school students in San Bernardino County were arrested for threatening to place a bomb on a teacher’s desk, authorities said. Woodcrest Junior High School students reported the threats to the principal.
Two 12-year-olds and a 13-year-old had made the threat after one boy had a disagreement with a teacher, said Ontario Police Detective Mike Macias. No bomb-making materials were found at their homes, and the three were booked for investigation of making terrorist threats.
”It was no secret that these three kids were going to carry this out,” Macias said. ”They were planning to plant the bomb this Friday.”
Police said the boys cried and confessed during questioning.
Two teens were arrested in Perris on Tuesday in separate incidents.
In one arrest, an 18-year-old Perris High School student was overheard talking about planned violence. Sheriff’s deputies arrested Luis Benavides and booked him for investigation of felony possession of a knife at school.
”He made the comment that he needed help because he felt like killing somebody,” said sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Mark Lohman.
School security officials found a 4-inch knife in his backpack, and deputies found two small-caliber rifles and ammunition at his home, Lohman said.
In the second arrest, a woman was enrolling her son at the Perris Community Day School for troubled youth when, according to a sheriff’s report, the 14-year-old told an administrator: ”If you make me come here, I’ll bring a gun and shoot the place up.” The boy was taken to a juvenile jail.
Administrators at Wheatland High School, located in Yuba County about an hour north of Sacramento, brought in extra security Wednesday after a boy threatened to bring a gun to school and kill people. He was released to his parents after authorities determined the boy did not have access to any weapons.
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