Mother gave guns to would-be school shooter to “let him grow up”

Mother gave guns to would-be school shooter to "let him grow up"

Back in late January, just days after the shooting at Marshall County High School in Benton, Kentucky, that left two dead, a cache of weapons was found in the bedroom of a 14-year-old student of Uniontown Area High School in Pennsylvania. Police were tipped off to the juvenile suspect after another student recorded the suspect making a threat against the school. Whenever one of these stories breaks you always wonder where these kids get the guns from. Well, wonder no more.

The boy’s mother, 45-year-old Lenora Ann Hendrix, has been charged with knowingly and intentionally delivering or providing a firearm to a minor. When asked why she would give a 14-year-old an arsenal of weapons she allegedly replied to teach him responsibility and to “let him grow up.” Guess what, lady. He was neither responsible nor grown up.

While a parent being charged for giving their kids guns that would be used in a school shooting is rare, it’s not unheard of. On the other side of the Keystone State, in Montgomery County, Michelle Cossey was sentenced to four months in prison and five years probation for illegally obtaining guns for her home-schooled son Dillon who plotted an attack against Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School near Philadelphia.

I understand gun culture is different in rural America than in it is in urban areas. I understand allowing one of your children to possibly have a rifle to go hunting if they have an adult to go hunting with to teach them how to responsibly handle a gun. However, allowing your son to keep a semi-automatic rifle, a shotgun, two machetes, throwing knives, two lever-action rifles, a revolver, a crossbow with arrows, and bulk ammunition in his room only teaches him to be selfish and violent.

Cache of weapons found in Pa. school shooting plot

Cache of weapons found in Pa. school shooting plot

Just a few days after the fatal shooting at Marshall County High School in Benton, Kentucky, a 14-year-old was arrested in Western Pennsylvania for allegedly plotting a school shooting. A student of Uniontown Area High School, in Uniontown, PA, is said to have heard the suspect making a threat against the school. That student told his parents, who informed law enforcement. When police searched the suspect’s home in Henry Clay Township, they reportedly found

…a cache of weapons in his bedroom including a semi-automatic rifle, a shotgun, two machetes, throwing knives, two lever-action rifle, a revolver, a crossbow with arrows, and bulk ammunition for all of the weapons.

At what point does a cache become an arsenal because I think this kid was pretty close. Also, in what tragically has become the norm these days, no one seems to know where he got the weapons from. Now I’m not familiar with Henry Clay Township itself, however, when I lived in Pennsylvania the term ‘township’ usually indicated the community was in a rural area. There’s a joke about Pennsylvania that it’s Pittsburgh on one side, Philadelphia on the other and Alabama in between. Those areas of Pennsylvania are also sometimes referred to as Pennsyltucky. The reason I bring this up is the area could be a hunting community which could partially explain the ease of access in which the weapons were obtained.

That’s not the worst part of the story either. When asked why he was planning a shooting at the school the suspect allegedly said because there were other students he just didn’t like.

When asked about why the suspect allegedly wanted to target the four students, Fayette County District Attorney Richard Bower said, “He didn’t like them. That’s what he said, he didn’t like them. What a reason to do something.”

The suspect’s parents are said to be cooperating with police but one has to wonder what they were doing this entire time their son was building an arsenal.

UPDATE 2/4/2018: Catching up on some backlogs and found an interesting tidbit on this story. The student who first reported the threat is said to have actually recorded the threat on his cell phone as it was being made.