A 15-year-old Matanzas High School student became the second Flagler County school student this year to be arrested Monday and charged with making written threats to kill, a second degree felony, after he circulated a brief SnapChat video showing him with a long gun and a threatening caption: “I got sum for y’all just wait till 2:15.”
The student did not deny sending the video, but said it was in answer to being almost “jumped” in a school bathroom earlier in the day.
The video was viewed by a Daytona State College student who graduated from Matanzas last year but who was still on the 15-year-old student’s SnapChat account. Knowing that the 15 year old was at Matanzas, the college student immediately screen-recorded the SnapChat message and contacted 911 in Flagler.
Deputy Nicholas Champion, the school resource deputy assigned to Matanzas, investigated the incident. The student was initially pulled from class and searched out of fear that he could have a weapon on campus. Champion then interviewed the student, who agreed to speak with the deputy after getting his Miranda rights. Champion told the student he was not under arrest at the time of the interview, but also that the student was not free to leave, according to the student’s subsequent arrest report. The student told Champion that
The student said that during third period he was in the bathroom with another student “when seven unknown males entered the bathroom acted as if they were going to ‘jump’ him,” the report states. The 15 year old said he got into a verbal altercation with them, but left the bathroom without fighting. Tom Wooleyhan, the dean of students, told Champion that during the same period, the 15 year old walked into a class to which he was not assigned and told another student that he would spit in his face and mess him up.
The 15 year old acknowledged the incident and said that student was one of the seven who’d walked into the bathroom as if to mess him up. “The dean’s office was actively investigating this claim and is trying to identify who the other students were, but were only able to identify two kids as of
now,” the report states. More follow-ups are expected Tuesday.
In response to what he perceived as threats from the seven individuals, the 15 year old then sent the SnapChat video to them, “to let them know who they were messing with,” the report states, “and that he would fight them after school.” The student claimed the video in question was old, though he had resent it today, and that the long gun in it was a prop from a music video called “Run It,” by Yung Flag, he’d been in several weeks ago. The video begins with a disclaimer in capital letters: “ALL FIREARMS IN THIS VIDEO ARE PROPS FOR ENTERTAINMENT USE ONLY.”
The student was arrested and charged with making written threats to kill. He was processed at the local jail and turned over to juvenile justice in Daytona Beach, where he was to be held or returned to his parents, depending on his record.
“We cannot stress the fact enough that we have a zero tolerance policy in Flagler County and making a threat will be taken seriously,” Sheriff Rick Staly said. “Whether you think it is a joke or not, making a threat is a crime with serious consequences. Any and all threats will be investigated. I am thankful for the anonymous person who called to alert us to the video. Parents, talk to your kids.”
Less than two weeks into this school year, a 14-year-old Flagler Palm Coast High School student faced an identical charge after making written threats on Instagram, off campus.