limaohio.com

Elida teen who posted school threat gets probation

By Greg Sowinski gsowinski@civitasmedia.com

May 5, 2014

LIMA — An Elida High School freshman accused of threatening her school will get the help she asked for at an earlier court hearing.


The 14-year-old girl was sentenced Monday to receive and complete counseling. She was placed on probation and ordered to perform 40 hours community service. Judge Glenn Derryberry of Allen County Juvenile Court also gave the girl a 15-day suspended sentence to the detention center should she get in trouble.


The judge said it was her first time ever at Juvenile Court. He also told her it could be her last if she behaved.


“That’s a good reason to do what you’re supposed to be doing,” Derryberry said.


The girl was sentenced on the charge of making a false alarm, a first-degree misdemeanor. She had nothing to say before the judge pronounced the sentence.


The girl has been released to the custody of her grandparents and is living with them. She was on electronic monitoring, but the judge ended that Monday.


The sentencing comes after she had a psychiatric evaluation and mental health assessment.


The threat was discovered March 3 when a man researching school shootings came across a post written by the girl on Twitter. The man alerted the Allen County Sheriff’s Office, and deputies were sent to the girl’s home to find her. She was taken into custody and interrogated.


The girl admitted to making the threat, officials said.


The girl’s threat said she would set off a bomb at the school and shoot people. The girl did not have access to weapons, Assistant Allen County Prosecutor Chris Steffan said.


The girl was asked if she planned to carry out the threat, and she said no. She also indicated the reason she made the threat was she hoped to get suspended for the rest of the school year, which happened.


That threat comes on the heels of another school threat. An Elida Middle School student was planning to stab staff and students with knives he brought to school, but he turned himself in before carrying out his plan. The 13-year-old boy’s case is pending at Juvenile Court.