A student from Mississippi has been arrested just weeks into the school year after he allegedly threatened to “shoot up” his high school, according to authorities.
The student, who is just 14 years old, allegedly made the threat on social media Friday night, saying he would “shoot up the school Monday,” Jackson County Sheriff’s Department said. The male student attends St. Martin High School in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, on the Gulf Coast near Biloxi.
He is not being named due to his age.
The student was arrested Saturday morning, just one day after he made the threat, police said.
He is being charged with making a terrorist threat on social media. He is being held at Jackson County Youth Detention Center.
The school sent a letter to parents informing them of the incident: “Last night I was alerted of a threat made against SMHS via social media. As always, the threat was taken very seriously and law enforcement became involved. The person making the threat is now in police custody being charged with a felony. As of July 1, the state of MS considers such threats against schools as a terroristic threat,” the letter said according to Biloxi ABC affiliate WLOX.
“Although it saddens us that a poor decision could have such a serious impact on a young person’s life, such statements written or uttered WILL NOT be tolerated,” the statement continued. “School safety above everything else is our NUMBER ONE priority.”
The school year just started on Aug. 6.
There have been a number of shooting threats made online leading to arrests in recent weeks in the wake of shootings in El Paso, Texas; Dayton, Ohio; and Odessa, Texas.
Two students, one a middle schooler, were arrested in late August for separate shooting threats in Davie, Florida, and Brandon, Florida. Another was arrested just days earlier in Daytona Beach for a threat made while playing a video game.
A 15-year-old girl was arrested in Fresno, California, in mid-August for posting a photo of guns and the warning “Don’t come to school tomorrow” on Snapchat.