School crime blotter 12/11/2017

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December 11, 2017

School crime blotter 12/11/2017

Threatening Snapchat video prompted Wando High School lockdown:
South Carolina. School goes into lockdown over someone flashing gang signs on Snapchat. Overreaction? Discuss.

Threat At Wilde Lake High School Was ‘Joke’: Student:
Another threat posted to Snapchat. Student claimed it was a joke. Jokes are supposed to be funny Junior.

Deputies investigating threat at South Florence High:
A picture of a rifle and the phrase ‘South Florence Massacre’ was posted to Snapchat (I’m detecting a theme) aimed at South Florence High School in South Carolina.

Deputies search Wilson High School following threat on social media, no devices found:
The next day, also in Florence, South Carolina, police locked down Wilson High School following a threat of a Columbine-like attack that was posted on social media, probably Snapchat. No devices or weapons were found at the school.

Police Investigate Snapchat Gun Threat At Grosse Pointe North High School:
Ok, this is just getting repetitive now. Anyway, police were investigating a threat against Grosse Pointe North High School in Michigan after a threat was posted to Snapchat that had a picture of a student holding a gun with the caption “Don’t go to school today”. The student allegedly said he was trying to get the school to close for the day. No arrests have been made yet.

Stillwater high school shooting threat was ‘dark humor’ gone bad, police say:
Another social media threat, this time aimed at Stillwater High School in Minnesota, The message read “If you go to Stillwater, do not go to school tomorrow because there’s someone threatening to shoot up the school.” Another one of those ‘just a joke’ threats. No arrests have been made.

Since I’ve mentioned Snapchat multiple times, I’m obligated to mention that if you’d like to read more about crimes on social media you can read my other site, Social Mayhem.

Additional details on the Aztec High School shooting

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December 9, 2017

Additional details on the Aztec High School shooting

The victims in this past Thursday’s school shooting at Aztec High School in New Mexico have been identified as 17-year-old Casey Jordan-Marquez and Francisco “Paco” Fernandez. Ms. Jordan-Marquez was a cheerleader at the school while Mr. Fernandez was a football player. A fund for Ms. Jordan-Marquez has been set up at YouCaring as well as a GoFundMe. A GoFundMe has also been set up for Mr. Fernandez.

The gunman has been identified as 21-year-old William Atchison, a former student of the school. Police say Atchison took the coward’s way out via self-inflicted gunshot shortly after police breached the school. Atchison is said to have been planning this attack. He reportedly blended in with the students as school began before firing at random targets. My previous post on the matter stated that 15 people had been injured, but that has since been proven incorrect.

Police say that Atchison used a 9MM Glock pistol but was also in possession of multiple ammunition clips. The gun was purchased legally, take that as you will. Atchison also fits my personal profile of a school shooter, a selfish and entitled kid who couldn’t deal with his own failures in life. Police found the following message on a flash drive that was in Atchison’s possession when they found his body.

December 7, 2017

If things go according to plan, today would be when I die.

I wait until the school buses are detected, then head out on foot disguised as a student.

I go somewhere and gear up, then hold a class hostage and go apesh**, then blow my brains out.

Work suck, school sucks, life sucks.

I just want out of this sh**.

F*** this state, it really is bad. Think I’m insane? I’m actually more rational, peaceful and less loony than a majority of the citizenry of this entire region.

Oh, I forgot to throw in egomania there too.

Atchison had a previous run-in with the FBI too. He is said to have posted on a video game ‘If you’re going to conduct a mass shooting, does anyone know anything about cheap assault rifles?’ This prompted a March 2016 visit from the FBI. Atchison claimed he was just being a troll and the FBI had no cause to detain him. Personally, I’d love to know what video game it was. While I don’t believe video games cause someone to be violent, there are certain games that seem to attract cretins like this. If I had to further postulate, I wouldn’t be surprised to find out he was a trilby-wearing Gamergater who thought the world owed him everything because he was a white male.

Listen kids, the internet and online games aren’t the real world. You may be an ace at Counterstrike but that’s not going to pay the bills, and no, you’re not going to be a pro-gamer. If you think everything around you sucks, maybe you’re the problem. Now, two innocent people with promising futures are dead all because this selfish man-child couldn’t handle the real world.

(Sources)
KRQE
Daily Mail
KRQE
KOB

School crime blotter 12/7/2017

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December 7, 2017

School crime blotter

Teen charged over Facebook threat to school:
16-year-old charged with posting threat on social media against Carroll High School in Iowa.

Senior High, Northwest placed on lockdown Tuesday:
Grand Island Senior High and Northwest High School, both in Grand Island, Nebraska, were placed on lockdown after a threat was allegedly posted to Snapchat. Two 16-year-old girls have been arrested.

13-Year-Old Girl Cited in School Threat in New Salem:
A 13-year-old girl has been arrested for allegedly writing graffiti threatening a school shooting at New Salem-Almont High School in North Dakota. The threat was not credible.

Teen charged after threats made against Chesterfield County school:
14-year-old arrested for allegedly posting a threat on social media against Central High School in Pageland, South Carolina.

Two dead in school shooting at Aztec High School in New Mexico

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December 7, 2017

Two dead in school shooting at Aztec High School in New Mexico

Two students are dead and 15 injured after a school shooting took place at Aztec High school in Aztec, New Mexico, earlier today. The shooter was also said to have been a student of the school and is also dead. It’s not known of the shooter took the coward’s way out or was subdued by police. So far these are the only real details known at this point, but I wanted to get in front of a few things before the story develops any further.

The first is that there have already been reports of people saying ‘it can’t happen here’. Please stop this way of thinking. While the odds of you being a victim of a school shooting are actually infinitesimal it can happen anywhere. As I’ve said before, small towns like this is where school shootings are more likely to happen. Rarely do occurrences like this happen like this in big cities.

The other thing I wanted to talk about is that the media is once again quoting stats from gun control advocacy group Everytown for Gun Safety. The latest stat they’ve thrown out is there have been 266 school shootings in the United States since 2013. In previous posts I have shown that their definition of a school shooting is very open to interpretation and they are prone to hyperbole. I’m not some gun rights advocate either. I just want to show the truth no matter the subject and Everytown’s stats are not truthful.

I’ll have more details posted as they become available.

(Sources)

USA Today
KOB4
Newsweek
KOAT

School Crime Blotter 12/6/2017

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December 6, 2017

School Threat Crime Blotter 12/6/2017

Teen Girls Arrested for School Threats Inspired by ‘Pretty Little Liars,’ Police Say
Piqua High School, Piqua, Ohio.

Hamilton West student threatens shooting on social media:
Hamilton West High School, Hamilton, New Jersey. Threat was not credible.

Marana Unified issues statement on school shooting threat:
Marana, Arizona. Graffiti threatening school shooting found in Marana Middle School. Threat unsubstantiated.

Shooting threats made on social media toward schools in Maspeth & Middle Village under investigation:
School shooting threats made on social media towards schools in the Queens, New York neighborhoods of Maspeth, Miiddle Village and Elmhurst.

Warning of school shooting on bathroom wall causes lockout at Largo High:
Largo, Florida. Threat posted to social media. Investigation is ongoing.

NOT SCHOOL SHOOTINGS

21-year-old Nicholas O’Connor shot the security cameras at Booksin Elementary School in San Jose, California, while school was not in session. Disturbing, but not a school shooting.

Two students were shot and wounded outside Graham-Kapowsin High School in Graham, Washington. Police believe the shooting may be gang related. Not a school shooting.

Florida man drew school shooting on kid’s homework

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December 4, 2017
Robert Paul Alexander Edwards and his creation

33-year-old Robert Paul Alexander Edwards, of Gulf County, Florida, has been charged with the second-degree felony of written threat to kill or do bodily injury. The man with four first names allegedly drew a sketch of a school shooting on his stepson’s homework. You can tell by his mugshot that he probably has a history of poor life choices.

The threat was deemed to be not credible, but what was this moron thinking? Did he honestly think it wouldn’t come back to bite him in the ass? If I had to hazard a guess, I would say there’s probably some mental health issues going on here, however, that should not excuse his actions. It makes me wonder if the child is in a safe environment.

One of the West Memphis Three arrested

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December 3, 2017
One of the West Memphis Three arrested
Jessie Misskelley

This is old news by now, but Jessie Miskelley, of the West Memphis Damien Echols + 2, was arrested over Thanksgiving weekend. He was arrested in West Memphis on traffic violations including driving without a license, driving without insurance and having no headlights. Second Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Scott Ellington doesn’t think this is enough to warrant Misskelley going back to jail under the terms of the Alford Plea the three took to get out of jail. I’ll talk more about that in a moment.

As with all things WM3 related, someone thinks this is part of a larger conspiracy. Damien Echols’ attorney, Patrick Benca, says that he’s never seen anyone get arrested for driving with a suspended license in the past 18 years. I’d like to know which rock he’s been living under because anywhere I’ve ever lived, driving with a suspended license gets you locked up. I don’t know if Miskelley has posted bail yet. The last article I read, which was dated yesterday, didn’t mention him being released. I guess if you’re not friends with Johnny Depp you can’t just snap your fingers and make things happen for you.

Getting back to the Alford Plea, which in case any one forgot is a guilty plea, the terms state the three have to be employed, be drug free and are subject to search and seizure without a warrant. What does Damien Echols do for a living exactly? Are celebrity hanger-on and fortune-teller, or whatever the hell he claims to do, real jobs? Has he ever even had a real day of work in his life?

Bulletproof backpacks are not the answer

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November 14, 2017

Bulletproof backpacks are not the answer

Another headline that has been assaulting my inbox since the Sunderland Springs shooting is that a Christian private school in Miami, Florida, has been offering bulletproof panels for student backpacks on the school’s store website. This is not uncommon as this idea has been floated around for years and usually surfaces after a high-profile shooting. In my opinion this is nothing more than fear profiteering. Profitfearing if you will.

While mass shootings have been a hot topic in our society, the odds of being a victim in a school shooting are rather low, especially in a big city like Miami. Not only that, but the backpacks provide minimal protection. The Miami Herald has reported the panels will withstand the force of .44 and .357 bullets, but not those from rifles, you know, the guns of choice by the majority of recent mass shooters. That’s not even mentioning that while this may be a good idea in theory, if it came to an actual active shooter, there’s no predicting how effective the backpack would actually be. That’s not even taking into account that even if you crouch behind the backpack, there’s still enough surface area exposed for a victim to be seriously injured in a shooting. Let’s also not forget that anything that’s bulletproof isn’t really bulletproof. The correct label is bullet resistant. Bulletproof vests also don’t work like you see on TV. If someone in a bulletproof vest is shot at point-blank range they don’t get up a few seconds later to subdue the evildoer. More often than not they’ve suffered broken ribs at the least which can lead to punctured lungs. Bulletproof vests are also not the best protection against knives either, obviously, or they would be called knife-proof vests. Lastly, at $125 apiece, they don’t sound like much protection to me.

Columbine no longer in the top ten worst shootings

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November 14, 2017

In the wake of the shootings at First Baptist Church in Sunderland Springs, Texas, where 26 people were killed, I was assaulted by the following headline by multiple news sources: “Columbine is no longer one of the 10 deadliest shootings in modern U.S. history.” I understand why the media is doing this. They’re trying to get the point across that there’s been so many mass shootings recently that one of country’s greatest tragedies has been eclipsed by recent events. However, in doing so they’ve done a great disservice to many people in the process.

First off, in this society that either only reads the headlines, or only clicks on listicle links, it lessens the impact of Columbine and what happened there. While there were other school shootings in the late 1990s prior to Columbine, Columbine was the flashpoint where school shootings were added to the common American vernacular and has sadly influenced almost every school shooting since. To say it’s been somehow ‘demoted’ from this dubious list not only lessens its historical impact, but it also trivializes the lives and deaths of the 13 victims who died and the many who were left with lifetime scars from the Columbine shooting.

Secondly, lists like this that are ranked by body count, turn mass shootings into a competition. While I’m not saying this article will spur dozens of mass shooters trying to make the ‘top ten’, there may be at least one who was already planning a mass shooting who’s now looking to crack the list. This is not a competition. All the numbers listed on the article are people who are now dead due to some selfish asshole who couldn’t deal with their own inadequacies in their lives.

In my opinion this is irresponsible journalism designed to get clicks rather than to inform.

One of Jennifer Parks’ killers gets reduced sentence

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November 12, 2017
One of Jennifer Parks' killers gets reduced sentence
Jennifer Parks

I’ve been writing about the murder of 15-year-old Jennifer Parks for the past 12 years, and I always feel a little bad when I write about it. I feel bad because whenever I write a new post on whatever the latest development is, I have to write about the details of her murder which are still horrific to think about. Since Jennifer’s murder, I have become friends with people who were close to Jennifer’s family and I’ve become friends with Jennifer’s mother, Laurie Parks. While Mrs. Parks is aware of what I write, I always feel guilty when I bring up Jennifer’s murder again for whatever reason. With this post I feel twice as bad.

For those of you who may be new to the site, Jennifer was killed on July 30, 2005 by 18-year-old Jonathan Zarate and his brother, 14-year-old James Zarate. Jennifer’s family were neighbors with the Zarates in Randolph, New Jersey. The two brothers stabbed and beat Jennifer to death in their basement just because Jennifer reported to her school that James Zarate was bullying her. After the Zarate brothers killed her, they dismembered her body so they could fit her remains into a trunk. The trunk was left in the back of the Zarate family’s Jeep until they could try to dispose of her body. Her body was there 24 hours before the brothers and an accomplice tried to dispose of her remains in the Passaic River. A police officer caught them trying to dispose of Jennifer’s remains. Jonathan Zarate was tried first and in 2009 was sentenced to life in prison. Then James Zarate was tried as an adult and later that year was sentenced to life with eligibility for parole after serving 76 years of his sentence. In 2016, a resentencing was ordered for James Zarate based on court rulings that state mandatory life without parole for teens is cruel and unusual. Back in September, it was ruled that James Zarate would remain sentenced as an adult.

Now, the reason I feel twice as bad with this post is because this past week, the same judge who sentenced James Zarate to life was forced to resentence him to 50 years with the eligibility for parole after 43 1/2 years. Back in January, the New Jersey State Supreme Court ruled that juvenile killers need to have a meaningful chance for parole from their sentences. This is not surprising, considering New Jersey abolished the death penalty when they had someone like Jesse Timmendequas (TL;DR The monster who killed Megan Kanka resulting In Megan’s Law) sitting on their death row.

To this day James Zarate has denied any responsibility in the killing and has become a paralegal while in prison. Meanwhile, Jennifer Parks’ death shows the massive loss of potential that she could have given this world. Jennifer would have been around 27 now. She could have been planning for her wedding or already taking care of a young family while her parents could have been the adoring grandparents. Or she could have been a strong woman entrenched in her career or causes. Tragically, neither is the case. After Jennifer’s death her parents divorced and later after that, her father died of a heart attack. So Jennifer’s murder has cost a family more than the loss of a daughter. However, if the Daily Record will allow me to indulge in a liberal dose of fair use I’ll let Laurie Parks’ own words speak for themselves.

“The heinousness of the crime is exactly the same as it was 12 years ago. Not a day has gone by since July 30, 2005, that I don’t miss my daughter Jennifer Parks. The horrific things that the defendant and his brother did to Jennifer remain exactly the same. They tortured her, punched her, stabbed her with a knife and choked her. When she begged for her life, they shoved a bandana down her throat to stop her from screaming,” Parks said.

“What kind of people can do such a thing? Only monsters,” Parks said to the judge.

“Because of the defendant I was not there for Jennifer when she took her last breath or said her last words. I cannot even imagine the fear and pain she went through in her last moments. I lost my daughter, my husband, my home and basically my whole life and the defendant still stands before us breathing. I buried my daughter in pieces but the defendant still gets to fight for his life, something he took away from Jennifer. Something I believe he planned for a long time,” Parks said.

“He still gets to see his mother and his father. He still gets to live and stand before this court and say ‘my life matters.’ Well I say it doesn’t,” she said.

“He should have to remain behind bars. He should never experience freedom. He took that away from Jennifer, from me and all of Jennifer’s friends and family. I’d like to end by saying Jennifer Parks was a beautiful soul, a beautiful girl and she matters. Jennifer’s life matters,” Parks said.

It doesn’t get more powerful than those three words: Jennifer’s life matters. She didn’t ask to be killed. She can’t appeal her death. The New Jersey State Supreme court can’t make a judge rule her back to life. Jennifer doesn’t have the same luxuries that James Zarate does. Therefore, James Zarate’s life should be forfeit and he should be made to spend the rest of his unnatural life behind bars. Rehabilitation should not come at the expense of justice.