TAMPA - Hillsborough County deputies often deal with rumored threats in schools but not to the extent they have this last week.
"I've never seen it like this," said Cpl. Jason Napoli, with the Sheriff's Office School Resource Officer division. "We're dealing with a lot of alleged threats."
Napoli said since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut, Hillsborough Deputies have made two teen arrests locally. On Friday, they arrested a 15 year-old Armwood High School student for creating a fake Facebook page and sending threatening messages to herself. She told investigators why she did it.
"She wanted to avoid having to go to school because she felt she was being bullied at school," Napoli said.
Deputies said they learned of the case when the teen's mother called them Thursday evening. She noticed messages on her daughter's Facebook page discussing a school shooting threat to Armwood. But investigators said the 15 year-old girl had created a separate Facebook profile and sent messages to her own account. The conversation implied the fake friend was warning her he was going to bring a gun to school and harm people.
In a separate incident deputies arrested a 13 year-old Farnell Middle School student for writing graffiti on his own driveway. Initially the teen reported discovering the message written with a dark magic marker and told deputies he had no idea who could have done such a thing. It read: "From Con to FL Farnell UR Next!!" But later the teen confessed to his parents that he wrote the graffiti on the family driveway. His reason?
"Everybody at school had been discussing the incident last week in Connecticut and he was afraid that the gunman was still alive and could come to Farnell and he felt that writing it down would help him get over it," said Napoli.
Deputies arrested the boy at his school Tuesday morning.
Both teens are facing a charge of filing a false police report. The 15 year-old girl is also charged with disruption of a school function since deputies had to interrupt regular school activities to conduct interviews in the case.
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