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Student at Clover school arrested after threats to kill classmates over social media

A middle school student in the Clover district was charged with making threats Monday after threatening to kill two classmates, deputies said.

The boy, whose age and name were not released, was charged with making threats by the school resource officer at Oakridge Middle School, according to York County Sheriff’s Office.

The student is charged as a juvenile in South Carolina Family Court, documents show.

Sheriff’s Office spokesman Trent Faris confirmed the incident, investigation and arrest of the student but did not release further details.

School administrators contacted the school resource officer around 11 a.m. Monday after two students told school officials about the threats, according to the sheriff’s office. The students said they were scared of the boy who made verbal and text message threats, a sheriff’s office incident report stated.

In an interview with deputies, the student admitted sending an anonymous text message stalking threat using an app meant to hide his identity, the report showed.

The name of the app used by the student was not disclosed. Deputies seized a screenshot of the threatening text message, officers said.

A verbal threat also was made by the same suspect at a school function, the report stated. The suspect told a female classmate he would “rape” her then cut her up in pieces, according to the report.

A second student told deputies she overheard the verbal threat, then was told by the suspect he would kill her after breaking into her home, deputies stated in the report.

The boy told deputies the statement was meant as a joke, officers said.

Deputies said based on witness statements and his admission, the boy was criminally charged.

It remains unclear what disciplinary action was taken by the school or Clover school district. Bryan Dillon, spokesman for the district, said privacy rules forbid officials from releasing specific disciplinary measures.

However, he said the student was disciplined by district guidelines.

“This was a localized dispute involving three students that was handled,” Dillon said.

The student threats offense is defined under South Carolina law as: “It is unlawful for a student of a school or college in this State to make threats to take the life of or to inflict bodily harm upon another by using any form of communication whatsoever.”

A conviction can carry as much as a year in jail, state law shows. The new law making student threats specifically a crime was enacted in 2018.

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Andrew Dys covers breaking news and public safety for The Herald, where he has been a reporter and columnist since 2000. He has won 51 South Carolina Press Association awards for his coverage of crime, race, justice, and people. He is author of the book “Slice of Dys” and his work is in the U.S. Library of Congress.
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