Napa student arrested of planning Columbine-like attack at 2 schools.
A 14-year-old student at River Middle School in Napa is in police custody, accused of planning an attack at River Middle School and also at Vintage High School. Police did not release a motive.
“I would categorize it as a Columbine-like attack, wanting to cause harm and destruction to the young students and faculty at the schools,” said Police Chief Robert Plummer.
Napa Police Chief Robert Plummer says the student did not have weapons but that his planning did cross a line that showed intent. He did not want to elaborate because of possible copy cats and because the suspect is a juvenile.
The chief says they will be following up with teachers and others who knew him to see if there were any warning signs and if they can figure out what lead to the plan.
Parents were anxious as they dropped off their kids Tuesday morning. Napa police officers patrolled the front of the school to offer extra protection.
“Obviously I am really upset. It was really hard dropping my kids off this morning. I added a “Be Safe” to my “I love you, have a great day. It’s a small school I am just very shocked,” said Alison Butler, who has two kids at River Middle School.
Superintendent Rosanna Mucetti responded to that concern: “As a mom, I can understand that and empathize with that fear but what I can assure parents of is, in collaboration with the police department, school is open because we know our campuses are safe.”
Police say they found out about the threat because another student came forward. That child had been told about the attack and threatened that he would be hurt if he told anyone.
“A lot of the information we have gleaned so far from social media and technology leads us to believe this is something that was in the planning stages and would have come to fruition had we not been alerted to this by the person who called us and let us know. That young person is a hero,” said Chief Plummer.
The chief is now planning a public forum on school violence for the first Wednesday night in February, He is still working on finding a venue.