5th grader arrested for plotting to stab another student

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by Andrew Michalscheck

Video report by Natalie Brand

Posted on January 23, 2013 at 3:27 PM

Updated Friday, Jan 25 at 3:22 PM

Map: Frank Elementary School

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GUADALUPE, Ariz. -- A Valley 5th grader was arrested this week after allegedly plotting to stab another student for “snitching.”

The Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office said they were called to Frank Elementary School in Guadalupe on Tuesday after school officials learned of the student’s plan and found a knife in his backpack.

MCSO detectives spoke with the 10-year-old student who reportedly admitted that he had taken the knife to school with the intention of stabbing another student.

The student also said that he had planned to wear a black beanie to hide his identity, and that he had tried to recruit other students to help with his plot.

Those students, however, wound up informing teachers of the boy’s plans.

"Some students complained to the administrators that the 10-year-old had a knife and a beanie cap in his backpack," said Sheriff Joe Arpaio. "He was going to stab another student for that student allegedly snitching on him for being a bully."

The Sheriff credited students and school staff for being vigilant.

"Don't wait until something happens and then call," said Sheriff Arpaio. "If no one informed the teacher, it could have been too late.

The Sheriff's Office said this makes the second thwarted school plot in recent weeks. Just last month, a Red Mountain High School student was arrested, after the Sheriff's Office said she plotted to shoot and kill her classmates.  Investigators said the threats were discovered on an online post through YouTube.

Following the local threat and the tragedy in Newtown, Conn., Sheriff Arpaio called on his volunteer Posse to patrol schools, but he also told 3TV more school resource officers are needed on local campuses.

"With everything that has happened in other schools, I think kids should be protected," said Amada Garcia, who has several grandchildren who attend Frank Elementary.

"I think parents should be more aware," she added.

The student arrested  was booked into Maricopa County Juvenile Detention on felony charges of threatening and intimidating, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and disruption of an educational facility.

Tempe Elementary School District said the student has also been suspended while the investigation continues. A spokesman says a letter will be sent home to parents on Thursday.

"People from the school should have sent notices home," said Amada Garcia on Wednesday. "That way we would be aware of what's going on."

 

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