theadanews.com - Ada, Oklahoma

Local News

May 16, 2014

Sheriff: Boy arrested is remorseful

Ada — ADA — A boy who made threats to Byng Schools via social media did so to get attention and is remorseful for what he did, Pontotoc County Sheriff John Christian said Thursday.

Christian said during an interview, the boy made a statement to the effect he just wanted attention from friends and didn’t realize the scope of what he had done. After the investigation, Christian doesn’t believe the boy, from the Ada area, was actually going to hurt anyone.

“He wasn’t thinking of it as being bad attention, he just thought it was attention, Christian said.

The boy hadn’t been in any real trouble previous to this incident, Christian said.

“He seemed like a well-mannered, well-presented young man,” Christian said. “I think he just thought he was writing words and there was no effect to it.”

Christian said he explained to the boy the tremendous cost involved with what he had done (causing fear among parents and having officers called away from training and brought in for overtime) “plus what it had done to school systems, not just Byng, but other school systems. He broke down and cried and was very remorseful,” Christian said. “You could tell he never put any thought into what the effe ct of these comments were. He certainly did after we explained what all had taken place that day. Again, he broke down and sobbed when he realized this was a horrible thing that he had done.”

Christian said the boy was very cooperative and had high praise for the boy’s father, who convinced him to tell the truth. The case was turned over to the district attorney’s office for a charging decision. A spokesman for the district attorney’s office said Thursday the office is prohibited by law from discussing any juvenile actions.

Authorities were notified about the threats Tuesday evening. An investigation into who sent the threats (on Instagram) began immediately.

“The reporting party stated a user known as ‘wazzapp2’ stated he was going to come to Byng Schools tomorrow and do a Sandy Hook style shooting,” Deputy Burt Page said in a report. “The reporting party pulled up the conversation on the wazzapp2 posts ‘Tomorrow I am going to come to y’all’s school and shoot y’all just like sandy hook,’ followed by three emoticons depicting crying.”

Page said a short time later, he received information of additional threats.

“In those, wazzapp2 states ‘You know what I have a life and my dads coming to y’all’s school tomorrow and I hope y’all are scared,’” Page said. “This was followed by another post which read, ‘Tomorrow your school is going to be destroyed and I hope y’all are there.’”

Deputy Page contacted Ada Police Department Detective Destry Musgrove, a computer forensic specialist.

“Musgrove advised me to contact Facebook in order to attempt to identify the Internet Protocol (IP) addresses used by wazzapp2,” Page said. “I was able to contact Facebook and received the IP addresses. Det. Musgrove was then able to identify what entities owned those addresses.”

On Wednesday morning, Christian had eight deputies respond to Byng Schools. Additional deputies were stationed at Latta and Vanoss schools, while Ada police, Chickasaw Lighthorse police and Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers also protected area schools.

Page said Musgrove was able to track all IP address to a location in Ada.

“Through the course of the investigation Det. Musgrove determined the holder of the IP addresses to have a 12-year-old son,” Page said.

Law enforcement spoke with the boy’s father who agreed to bring him in for an interview where the boy confessed he had made the threats. The boy was taken into custody by juvenile services.

Christian had high praise for all area law enforcement agencies who worked well together on this case.

“I know people get tired of me harping about it, but it’s so unusual for agencies to work together (so well),” he said. “Many agencies have infighting and are territorial. Here, we are blessed we all work together and when something happens it’s like, ‘How can I help?’ with all agencies. I truly feel blessed as a sheriff to have that and know that I have that backing.”

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