Detectives with the Prince George’s County Police Homeland Security Division have identified and located a 14 year-old female student who confessed to writing a series of emailed threats targeting two local high schools and a middle school. Her identity is being withheld because she is a juvenile. Late this afternoon, our detectives charged her with making threats of mass violence, electronic threats mailed to minor, and obscene matter/possession with intent to distribute, because, through the course of the investigation, it was determined that one of emailed threats contained obscene photos.
While we are still investigating why the suspect in this case made the threats, our investigators have determined that she did not have means to carry out the threats. Nonetheless, the possibility of harm struck fear and concern in the hearts of hundreds of parents and students as the threats were shared countless times on social media. Our agency dedicated detectives to investigate the case as soon as we learned of the threats Tuesday. We increased security at all of the affected schools out of an abundance of caution, because we don’t take chances in these cases. It was a substantial allotment of resources dedicated to making sure our county’s students were safe.
Chief Hank Stawinski said, “We take every threat of violence seriously. We identify the responsible individuals and we hold them accountable under the law for their actions. We conducted a search of this juvenile’s home and we seized all of her computer equipment. Now her family is having to suffer consequences as they now have to work through the legal system with their daughter. The repercussions of making threats such as these are real and should be sobering to any young person. Again, we are strongly urging parents to speak with their children about the serious consequences they will face for making a threat even if it is determined to be a prank. There is no such thing as a prank to threaten mass violence. A threat is a threat and it will be dealt with accordingly based on the fear that they generate in the community. No one forwarded us the threat because they thought it was just a prank. They sent us these threats because they were truly scared.”