Boy, 15, caught bringing 'several pounds of bomb making materials to school blow up a Muslim church’
A 15-year-old Arizona high school student has been arrested after he brought ‘several pounds’ of potassium nitrate to class, shortly after telling friends he was planning to 'blow up' a mosque, cops said.
Police were first alerted to the suspect after one of his classmates at the Pinnacle High School, in Phoenix, told his parents on Monday that his friend had expressed a desire to ‘blow up a Muslim church.'
He 'didn’t observe any weapons or devices that would allow the suspect to act upon his statement’, at the time, the boy told his parents.
But on Tuesday morning, he said he noticed the suspect carrying a plastic bag containing ‘several pounds of a white powdery substance’ around campus, police documents detail.
He reported the sighting to school officials who isolated the teen and dialed 911, reported.
When officers arrived, they found the boy in possession of the white powder, which tests later revealed to be potassium nitrate.
Phoenix police Sergeant Tommy Thompson highlighted that though potassium nitrate isn't a dangerous material on its own, when mixed with other chemicals it can be used to help create an explosive device.
The teenager, who has not been named, remains in custody where he's currently being questioned by police.
Pinnacle High School remained open through the ordeal because the suspect hadn't issued threats towards the school or anyone connected to it, Paradise Valley Unified School District officials said in a statement.
The body added that students and staff were never in any danger and it was safe to return for school on Wednesday morning as normal.
'It’s always advisable that parents check their teen’s phones and/or tablets to see what they are texting, posting on social media, and passing on to others. Teens should be reminded that making alleged threats, even when they intend it as a joke, can have severe consequences and is considered a felony.
'Parents should never hesitate to call or email the school, as well as the police if they hear or see any concerning information.'
Pinnacle High School and PVSchools say they are full cooperating with the Phoenix Police Department's investigation.