Student arrested for making threats toward Chandler High School

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CHANDLER, AZ (3TV/CBS 5) -

Chandler police have arrested a 16-year-old student for plotting to commit acts of violence at Chandler High School. According to Sgt. Daniel Mejia with Chandler PD, the suspect threatened to use explosives and firearms at the school.

Mejia said the suspect is a resident of Chandler and a student at the school. Police say there are no known prevailing threats against the school, staff or parents.

The suspect made statements to police corroborating his involvement in the threat.

Mejia said the suspect was booked into the Maricopa County Juvenile Detention Center on one count of terrorism.

Chandler High School sent the following letter to parents:

Dear Parents and Guardians, 

I am writing to inform you that Chandler Police arrested a Chandler High student on Thursday, March 1st related to a possible threat to the school. Here is the statement released from Chandler Police this afternoon:

“On February 28, 2018, Chandler Police were made aware of a possible school threat against Chandler High School. On March 1st, 2018, a sixteen year old juvenile suspect was arrested for plotting to commit acts of violence at Chandler High School, by utilizing explosives and firearms. This juvenile suspect is a Chandler resident and a Chandler High School student. At this time, there are no known prevailing threats against Chandler High School students, staff or parents.

During this investigation, detectives worked closely with Chandler Unified School District Administrators to ensure the safety of all students, parents and staff. Chandler Police conducted interviews with witnesses who had knowledge of these criminal acts. The suspect was contacted by police and made statements to detectives that corroborated his involvement.

The suspect was booked into the Maricopa County Juvenile Detention Center with one count of Terrorism, a class 2 felony.

The Chandler Police takes all threats seriously and will aggressively pursue any reports of this nature. School safety is a combined effort and we ask our community to be vigilant. We continue to encourage everyone to report any threats or suspicious activity.

Please keep in mind that this is still an active investigation and more details will be shared as they become available.

For more information, please contact Sergeant Daniel Mejia at (480) 782-4108."

CUSD and Chandler High have a zero tolerance policy toward any message or threat to staff and students, and works cooperatively with law enforcement to pursue prosecution in these matters. The student has been identified and the Chandler Police Department, CUSD district administration, and school team are taking appropriate disciplinary action.

I want to assure the Chandler community that there is nothing we take more seriously than student safety. Parents and students are encouraged to inform the classroom teacher, or any member of the Chandler High School staff, of activity or conversation that could present a safety issue for our students and community. Your input is greatly valued as it is our responsibility to investigate issues that could impact the educational experience of our students. 

Please continue to discuss with your children the seriousness of messages that can be considered a threat by others. Student and staff safety will always be our highest priority. Thank you for your attention to this matter and for providing the opportunity to educate your children throughout the school day in a positive, safe school environment. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me. 

Sincerely, 
Larry Rother 
Principal, Chandler High

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