17-year-old charged with threatening to shoot up Flint school

Michigan

In this photo illustration, social media apps are seen on a mobile phone. (Photo by Chris McGrath/Getty Images)

FLINT, Mich. (WLNS) — A teenage girl may be facing 40 years in prison after making threats to shoot up Southwestern Classical Academy in Flint.

Prosecutor John Potbury says the 17-year-old was riding the school bus this morning when she recorded a video on her phone with a rap-style message in which threats of shooting up the school “like Oxford” were made and subsequently posted to social media.

The assistant principal at the school was alerted of the incident and reported it to Flint police.

My message to our community has been loud and clear over the years whenever we have had instances
of so-called ‘copycat threats’ following a school shooting or other mass shooting incidents around the
country and that message is that it is not a joke, it is a crime and it will be treated as such. I’m not going to try to figure out whether this incident in Flint today was intended to be a joke or whether it was a credible threat, the bottom line is that it’s a crime. Michigan law specifically states that it is not a defense if the person did not have the intent or capability of following through on the threat.”

Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton

The girl faces charges of a false threat of terrorism and one count of using a computer to commit a crime, both counts carry a 20-year sentence each.

In recent years, Prosecutor Leyton has made multiple presentations for schools around Genesee County, warning students that anyone who makes a threat to shoot up a school or set off a bomb or threaten to commit any similar act of terrorism at a school will face serious consequences.

“Oxford is not that far from Genesee County and my heart goes out to the families of the victims, the
school, and the entire Oxford community. This one has hit especially close to home and I want my message to get out there to every home in Genesee County,” said Leyton.

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