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Friday, February 16, 2018

Arrest made in "Kill list"
Cocke County Sheriff Armando Fontes has released information regarding a Thursday evening incident at Edgemont Elementary School./ He says that at approximately 8:30 pm, SRO/Deputy Colby Franco was contacted by a concerned parent who's child attended Edgemont Elementary. The parent stated her daughter had information concerning a threat that a student had a Kill list and was planning to shoot specific students at the school. Officer Colby contacted Principal Nathan Chambers because of safety concerns. Officer Franco began an investigation and was able to identify the suspect juvenile. The sheriff identified the suspect as a 14 year-old male Eighth grader who attends Edgemont Elementary. Officers Sgt. Randy Cutshaw and Officer Colby Franco went to the suspects home and contacted Sheriff Fontes along with Chief Deputy Derrick Woods. Officers spoke to the juvenile and when asked if he had a Kill list the minor went into his residence on his own free will and retrieved the list. The sheriff said the parents of the boy were very cooperative, and it was determined that a semi automatic 40 caliber Smith & Wesson handgun was in the residence unsecured. The child did have access to the weapon which was located in the mothers bedroom. Officers obtained a consent to search the residence and located the weapon. No other weapons were found and the parents stated there were no other weapons in the house. Officers did locate several knives and the parents were advised to secure them. The juvenile was advised of his rights by Sheriff Fontes, and the child in response said that he was being bullied at the school over the past year. The child said he was angry, but had no intention of killing anyone, “but he wanted to scare them”. Now the boy is criminally charged with Disorderly Conduct and Harassment. On Friday, Sheriff Fontes and Detective Danny Hartsell with the assistance of Principal Nathan Chambers, interviewed several students at the school who verified that there were in fact issues of bullying pertaining to the suspect. However the boy and other students had not reported the bullying to the principal or school staff. According to the sheriff, “The investigation revealed that the suspect child was disgruntled, had articulable motive to commit a shooting, and had acces to only one semi automatic weapon, yet did not follow throught with injuring any students. He did in fact intentionally create legitimate fear, and did make threats to kill or shoot students at Edgemont School, however the children failed to report the threats to faculity. The teen earlier today was brought before Juvenile Judge Brad Davidson and was ordered to refraim from being on any Cocke County Board of Education property and to begin home schooling. The child is on house arrest. Sheriff Fontes and other officers were at Edgemont school prior to the start of school today. “Edgemont Principal Nathan Chambers and school staff did an excellent job working with the Sheriff's office, and the School Resource Officers did an excellent job, and the parents of the minor child were very cooperative in addressing this serious issue,” the sheriff said. Sheriff Fontes said he was assured that the suspect does not have access to any weapons and Principal Nathan Chambers is continuing to counsel several students that were reportedly were involved in bullying student..” I want to express my gratitude to the student who reported the matter to her mother after a concern was raised.” And he added, “ Parents please teach your children to take all threats seriously and to report them to a faculty member immediately. Please express to your children the importance of treating others with respect and to not partake in any type of bullying even if it is a joke. It is vital that all gun owners keep their weapons secured in a strong locked container not accessible to their children. This situation had all of the elements which could have resulted in a school shooting.”

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