Internet clues lead to suspect | RecordCourier.com
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Internet clues lead to suspect

by Sheila Gardner

A 14-year-old Oregon boy was questioned this week after he broke into an Internet chatroom and told a 13-year-old Gardnerville girl he was going to blow up his middle school.

The girl, who at first didn’t believe the teen-ager’s threats, told her step-father, who contacted Douglas County sheriff’s deputies. The information was passed on to Oregon authorities who questioned the boy and contacted the FBI.

The girl told deputies that she was online with a friend Saturday night when an unfamiliar screen name sent her what’s known as an “instant message.” She said she ignored the first correspondence, but the writer continued to send her more messages outlining plans to blow up his Salem, Ore., middle school on Monday.

“At first I thought it was a joke, but as he kept telling me, I thought that everyone had a right to know,” she told authorities.

Investigators were able to retrieve the messages from the Internet.

“I’m just going to walk into the office, say hi and BOOM!” he told the girl.

He is a student at Adam Stephens Middle School in Salem, Ore. School officials said Tuesday the boy was suspended and may be expelled.

In her messages, the Gardnerville teen-ager tried to talk the boy out of his plans.

“Thank God these parents have open communication with their daughter,” said Sgt. Lance Modispacher. “In my opinion, this is not a little girl. This is a young lady who is responsible and intelligent enough to realize the difference between playing around on the computer and righteous threats. Oregon authorities deemed it severe enough to involve the FBI.”

Sgt. Tim Taylor of Marion County, Ore., said the boy was referred to juvenile court in Oregon.

The Record-Courier E-mail: rc@tahoe.com

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