Round Lake High student charged with making threatening video
A teen accused of making a threat on social media involving Round Lake High School is now facing a felony charge, authorities said.
The Round Lake Beach teen, who is a Round Lake High student, posted a video to Snapchat that seemed to show he was loading shotgun shells into a gun, Round Lake Police Chief Michael Gillette said.
However, the weapon was actually an Airsoft gun and the shells did not fit into it. The teen was sliding the shells into an empty space on the gun to make it seem like he was loading a real weapon, Gillette said.
The video also featured a song with lyrics describing students running from bullets, Gillette said. The teen said in the video he "couldn't wait for school tomorrow," Gillette said.
"Under the current climate, this threat was not taken lightly by school officials or police," he said. "We aren't going to take chances on something like this."
School administrators contacted police, who arrested the teen at home at 1:30 a.m. Gillette said.
The teen is not being identified by police due to his age and is being held at the Robert W. Depke Juvenile Justice Center near Vernon Hills.
Lake County State's Attorney's Office spokeswoman Cynthia Vargas confirmed the teen was charged with disorderly conduct, a Class 4 felony.
Gillette said the same student had made disturbing posts in the past in referencing school shootings, including at Columbine High School in 1999. No previous criminal action was taken against the student, he said.
Round Lake Area Unit District 116 spokeswoman Heather Bennett said students contacted teachers directly regarding the threatening post, and sent messages to various school pages on social media.
Bennett said district leaders sent an email to parents early Tuesday letting them know about the threat and that the student had been taken into custody.
"We applaud the several students who brought this important information to our attention," the email from district officials said. "Please continue to speak to your children about the importance of reporting such actions, even if they feel that it could be a joke."