Florida 5th grader accused of making school shooting threat

FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — A 10-year-old Florida fifth grade student has been arrested after making a school threat, sheriff’s officials said.

Investigators learned of the threats made by the boy on Saturday and arrested him, Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said in a social media post.

“This student’s behavior is sickening, especially after the recent tragedy in Uvalde, Texas,” the sheriff said.

An 18-year-old gunman entered Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, on Tuesday and opened fire on a fourth grade classroom, killing 19 students and two teachers.

Marceno said that making sure “our children are safe is paramount.”

According to the sheriff, investigators learned of a threatening text message sent by the boy, who attended Patriot Elementary School in Cape Coral, which is near Fort Myers on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

“We will have law and order in our schools! My team didn’t hesitate one second…NOT ONE SECOND, to investigate this threat,” Marceno said.

He said the school threat enforcement team was notified and began analytical research on the threat. Detectives then interviewed the boy and developed probable cause for his arrest.

The boy was charged with making a written threat to conduct a mass shooting.

“Right now is not the time to act like a little delinquent. It’s not funny. This child made a fake threat, and now he’s experiencing real consequences,” the sheriff said.

In a YouTube video, the sheriff’s office showed a deputy walking to the boy to a squad car. The Associated Press is not identifying the child because of his age.

Sheriff’s officials did not say whether the boy remained in a juvenile facility or was released to his parents.

Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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