Cal High student allegedly wanted to create 'Columbine 2.0'

Teen arrested, but not charged, for allegedly planning attack in April

Police have confirmed the California High School student who was arrested on suspicion of threatening violence against his fellow students in April was allegedly inspired to create a “Columbine 2.0.”

San Ramon police said in court documents that the freshman boy, whose name has not been released because of his age, allegedly planned to build bombs and recruit a friend to help him carry out an attack on school grounds in his senior year -- wanting to initiate the attack on April 20, 2021, the 22nd anniversary after the Columbine High school massacre in Colorado. The new details were first reported by the East Bay Times this week, with San Ramon police confirming the accuracy of the news report.

The teen was arrested by police on April 19 after a fellow student told school administrators the potential shooter had been making plans to “do harm” to students, police reported at the time.

The student informant said he was approached by the peer a week earlier and the boy attempted to recruit him to plan a shooting deadlier than Columbine, with the boy having six specific students in mind to target to kill, according to the new report.

“I want to commend our student for doing the right thing and reporting the information to an adult. Please help us message to our students and community that ‘if you see something, or know something, say something,’” Cal High principal Sarah Cranford wrote in an email to parents after the arrest.

The Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office elected to not press charges, and the boy was released the following Monday, according to San Ramon police. The DA's Office has declined to comment on the case because the arrestee was a juvenile.

“Very little information was given about this situation due to confidentiality. This caused a great deal of stress on campus,” parent Kelly Jellin told the San Ramon Valley school board at its May 8 meeting.

“This is a wakeup call for all of us," Jellin added in her statement during public comment on non-agendized items. "The district and community need to come together and figure out how to keep all of our students safe, before the nation offers us their thoughts and prayers due to yet another tragedy.”

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Posted by C.R.
a resident of San Ramon
on May 31, 2018 at 8:30 pm

So disheartening all the on goings with these school incidents. We send our children to school and don’t spend one more thought through out our day. We go to work, and focus on our days responsibilities. I am saddened that Mothers, Fathers and loved ones are living these horrific, tragic losses.
When does it end??!!

5 people like this
Posted by C. R. Mudgeon
a resident of Danville
on Jun 1, 2018 at 9:24 am

It will be interesting to see how this case is handled, both in terms of charges, as well as eventual punishment, sentencing, and/or treatment. It is not obvious to me what the right approach should be, for a plan to commit a horrendous act, but not for another three years. Especially given the current age and maturity level of a high school freshman.

Obviously something has to be done, but what? No crime was committed, other than an implied threat for three years from now. The need for counseling and treatment is clear, but what else? A very unusual case.

7 people like this
Posted by Huh?
a resident of Danville
on Jun 1, 2018 at 9:45 am

@C.R. Mudgeon "No crime was committed" - not quite. Attempted crimes are still crimes. If a person has a specific intent to commit the crime and makes a direct but ineffectual act done toward its commission, he or she is guilty of an attempted crime. Check out Penal Code 21a. Penal Code 664 also addresses punishment for attempted offenses.

10 people like this
Posted by Matty
a resident of Danville
on Jun 1, 2018 at 11:07 am

It says the county is NOT pressing charges... I'm sorry, but in addition to obviously needing psychological assistance, something needs to be done on at least the juvenile court level to punish this kid to some degree...even if it stays under seal and is expunged later as an adult if there are no repeats of the behavior/threats or obviously any illegal or violent actions for some period. He certainly should NOT be in a public school system any longer. According to this, he actually was targeting 6 students specifically, so it doesn't sound like some wild general threat for attention's sake. Those parents of the 6 should take out restraining orders at minimum.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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