UPDATE 2/3/2022: On January 9, students from St. Charles High School observed posts from two separate Instagram accounts threatening to “blow up” the school while displaying a photograph of a handgun.
At the time of the notification to officers, the students did not know who owned the accounts because the accounts had been disabled. Through investigation by detectives assigned to the Charles County Sheriff’s Office Homeland Security and Intelligence Section, a 17-year-old student was identified as the suspect and on February 2, the student was charged with making threats of mass violence.
The gun shown in the Instagram posts was a photo the student obtained from the internet.
The CCSO is reminding parents to talk with their children about the proper use of social media and the internet and the consequences of making threats of violence. Anyone with additional information is asked to call Sgt. J. Long at 301-609-6562. Tipsters who want to remain anonymous, but provide information about threats or criminal activity at schools may contact the confidential tip line at CCPS at 301-302-8305.
On January 9, the Charles County Sheriff’s Office received two calls regarding alleged threats of mass violence at St. Charles High School that would occur sometime this week.
A preliminary investigation revealed several students at the school were followed on Instagram by two separate unknown accounts which contained a post of a photo of an airsoft gun–which resembles a firearm–and indicated violence would occur. The students notified their parents who then called the police. At this time it is not known who created the accounts, but investigators are working leads to identify the person responsible.
The sheriff’s office Patrol Division, School Resource Section, and Criminal Investigations Division are working with the Charles County Public Schools Safety and Security in an attempt to identify the involved individuals.
Anyone with additional information is asked to call Officer Thompson at 301-609-3282 or the CCPS tip line at 301-302-8305. The CCSO is reminding people to report all suspicious activity and for parents to monitor their children’s social media accounts.
The investigation is ongoing.