Two 13-year-old Sabin Middle School students suspected of creating a "kill list" of classmates and staff they planned to "punish" were good kids, according to defense information shared in court Tuesday.
The first teen was said to have "no criminal history, no drug issues. No issues at all." The second, was described as "very smart;" a teen with "great ambitions" who "didn't give anyone any trouble." The Gazette is not naming the students because they are juveniles.
The defenses were used to argue that the teens be released from the Spring Creek Youth Services Center, where the boys appeared through video.
Magistrate Jeffrey Saufley denied the requests, citing "real concerns" about the teens' alleged offenses, which include inciting destruction of life or property and conspiracy, both class 6 felonies. The boys will be able to request release again at a Friday hearing, when charges are expected to be filed.
Police said Monday the teens were messaging online about an alleged hit list, which threatened faculty, students and facilities at Sabin. Police said they obtained search warrants that led them to seize guns, presumably from the teens' homes. No weapons were found on school property.
Police would not say how many people were on the alleged hit list, but said those named or their parents were contacted.
When it came to his client, attorney David Foley said "any threat has been removed."
Because the teens' father is a competitive shooter, there are weapons in the home, but they're locked in a safe with fingerprint ID security, Foley said. The teen also received a mental health evaluation on Oct. 5, one day after police received a tip about the threat, and it showed the teen was not a danger to himself or others, Foley said.
The teens' grandparents also traveled from out of state to help provide 24/7 supervision, Foley said.
The second boy's mother also promised full-time supervision should her son be released. She answered "no" when asked if there were weapons in her home.
She said the school principal already contacted her about an expulsion hearing "in the near future."
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