Education

'Guns and bombs in his locker': Ocean Bay Middle students make threats on school bus

Horry County police were called to Ocean Bay Middle School after four students discussed "shooting up the school, bringing weapons to school, and suicide" on the bus Thursday morning, according to a police report.

Police say the incident happened around 6 a.m. and involved two male and two female students.

When an officer arrived, he was told the students were in detention and that one of the student's locker and bags were searched and nothing was found.

The first student — a 12-year-old boy — was pulled from detention to give his statement to the officer.

The boy said after he got on the bus, he started telling "jokes" with the other three students that involved "shooting up the school, bringing weapons to school, and suicide," the report states.

The boy then admitted to telling other students on the bus that he had "guns and bombs in his locker at school," the officer wrote in the report.

Authorities say the boy then explained how the second student — another 12-year-old boy — said "if you want to die clap your hands."

After, he said all four of the students started clapping and that's when he began "making comments about shooting up the school," the report states. But the student alleges that he and the other kids were only "joking around" and that nothing was meant by it.

The officer then spoke to the second student, who claimed he had little involvement in the situation and that only the first boy was making comments. He said the only "joke" he made was in reference to "Ghostbusters," according to police.

But when the officer watched surveillance video from the bus, he said the boy also made "jokes" about "joining ISIS" and "splitting up" the hallways with the first student to "cover the 6th grade and 8th grade hallways before meeting back on the 7th grade hallway to finish the shooting."

The third student — an 11-year-old girl — said she was just sitting and sharing memes with the fourth student involved — another 11-year-old girl.

Both girls admitted to clapping when the two boys "began making their jokes," the report says.

After the officer was done interviewing the students, the Horry County Police Department's Criminal Investigations Division was contacted to investigate.

The students' parents were contacted and the officer notified the school board to set up hearing dates.

"The students faced appropriate disciplinary actions, per school policy," said Lisa Bourcier, spokeswoman for Horry County Schools. "We ask that parents please talk with your children regarding the dangerous consequences of making any type of an alleged threat or statement. We take the safety and security of all of our schools very serious, and we will hold students accountable for their actions."

Michaela Broyles: 843-626-0281, @MichaelaBroyles

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