Gulf Coast High School student arrested for making threat of violence on social media

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Seal of Gulf Coast High School in Collier County. (Credit: WINK News)
Seal of Gulf Coast High School in Collier County. (Credit: WINK News)

A Gulf Coast High School student was arrested Tuesday after he made a threat of violence to Pine Ridge Middle School over social media, according to the Collier County Sheriff’s Office.

The 15-year-old student was charged with written threats to kill or do bodily injury or conduct a mass shooting or an act of terrorism, which is a second-degree felony under Florida Statute 836.10.

CCSO was alerted to the threat through Fortify Florida, an anonymous school violence reporting platform. The threat was posted on a social media platform called Yolo: an anonymous chatting application that works in conjunction with SnapChat. A screenshot of the message was sent in with the tip.

The post was in a group titled “Pine Ridge Middle School.” The person who sent the message joined the group on Jan. 3 and sent a message saying “It’s pancho.” The following day, the same person sent a message to the group stating “I’m shooting up pine ridge on the 8th. Don’t go that day.”

An emergency request was sent to the application, to which they responded with the 15-year-old Gulf Coast High School student’s information. Detectives were able to confirm his identity through the Collier County Public School system.

During their investigation, detectives say the student confessed to making the threat but said he didn’t have any plans or intentions of harming anyone.

He told detectives he was mad at his parents and just wanted to scare people. Detectives say he was apologetic for his actions.

If you see something of concern to school safety, please don’t spread it, report it. You can call 911 or the Collier County Sheriff’s Office non-emergency number at 239-252-9300.

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