Southern California teens arrested over school shooting threats

Reuters News
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Posted: Apr 22, 2015 4:40 PM

By Michael Fleeman

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Three teenagers at two high schools in the Southern California city of Rancho Cucamonga have been arrested on suspicion of making threats on social media to shoot other students, authorities said on Wednesday.

Two 14-year-old students at Los Osos High School were arrested on Monday for investigation of conspiracy to commit murder after rumors of a threatened campus shooting, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.

"All students interviewed continued to point their fingers at each other, stating they heard it from the other one," a sheriff’s press statement said.

The investigation, which included looking at students’ phones, narrowed it down to the two teens, a boy and a girl who were not publicly identified because of their age, the department said. The youths were booked into juvenile hall. Officials declined to give further details.

Separately, an 18-year-old student at another Rancho Cucamonga high school, Andrew Riccardi, was arrested on Monday on campus in front of his classmates on suspicion of posting a Twitter threat, the sheriff’s department said.

The tweet included a photo of him holding what appeared to be a real gun at school, according to sheriff’s officials.

Although Riccardi said the gun was a replica, the principal “felt it was a credible threat and feared for the other students’ safety,” the sheriff’s department said.

A search of Riccardi’s room at home turned up no gun, but inside his car were two large knives, the sheriff’s department said. Riccardi was arrested for investigation of possessing weapons at school.

Court dates were pending. It was not immediately known whether any of the three teens had lawyers.

(Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Eric Walsh)