Investigators foil Hesperia student's plot to allegedly shoot classmates and staff
(FOX 11) - San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon talked with concerned parents Wednesday about a student's disturbing plot to shoot other students and staff at Encore High School in Hesperia.
McMahon said 33 people were on the suspect's hit list, which deputies found while serving a search warrant at both parents' homes on Tuesday.
"There certainly was the potential in this case for harm and he had the intent and capability based on what we know today to carry out an attack at that school," McMahon said.
The suspect, who is also a student at Encore High School, allegedly had limited access to firearms and planned on using explosives in the attack too. However, deputies did not find explosive material at the homes.
"I feel like it's kind of terrifying that someone would cause harm to fellow students that go there," Jonathan Seaman said, a senior at Encore High School.
The Sheriff said they learned about the plot on Saturday, but investigators didn't have enough evidence to make an arrest until Tuesday night.
Parents were upset they weren't notified sooner.
"It's heartbreaking that you are sending your kids to school and all this is happening and you get told until they day after he's arrested," mother Tammy Walker said.
"I would have kept my kid home," mother Alma Seaman said through tears. "It's not fair that you didn't tell us as parents."
School administrators assured parents the campus was safe since the parent's of the suspect kept him home during the investigation.
"The student will not be returning to our campus and has not been on campus this week," Encore Education Foundation CEO Denise Griffin said.
The suspect is being held at the High Valley Juvenile Detention Center and is expected to be charged with making terrorist threats and attempted murder.
Investigators believe he is the sole suspect in the plot, but there will be additional security at the high school throughout the week.
All 33 people on the suspect's "hit list" were notified.
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