Featured News - Current News - Archived News - News Categories

Students charged with conspiracy

by Kari Ashworth - News Editor
Tue, Nov 12th 2019 09:00 pm

Three Albion Middle School students have been charged with conspiracy in the second degree, a Class B felony, following a thwarted attack on the school. 

A threat was reported to a staff member of the Carl I. Bergerson Middle School on Monday, Nov. 4, that “consisted of violence from one student to another student,” Albion Police Chief Roland Nenni said in a press conference on Friday, Nov. 7. The threat also made mention of physical violence toward others on the school’s campus.

The Albion Police Department and the Albion School District administration, including the school resource officer, began an investigation of that threat, and the threat assessment team — which consists of members of the Albion Police Department, the Orleans County District Attorney’s Office, the Orleans County Mental Health Department and others — was called to assist with the investigation. 

“That investigation that the team started, along with the lead of the Albion police revealed that three Albion middle school students were in the process of developing a plan to kill and injure occupants of the Albion Middle School,” Nenni said during the press conference. “The plan was to enter the middle school with explosives and incendiary devices and firearms to kill and injure students and staff. A date had also been set to carry out that plan.”

Several legally owned firearms and electronics have been seized, and Nenni believes the threat is not imminent. 

All three students were under the age of 16 and have been suspended indefinitely from the school.

“The students are currently suspended pending the required long term disciplinary consequences,” Superintendent Michael Bonnewell said during the press conference. “There will be a superintendent’s hearing with procedures specified in law to determine ongoing consequences for students.”

The suspects are not currently in custody, something Nenni said is normal for their age. The matter will be settled in family court due to their ages. 

“Because of their ages of course this will all eventually get adjusted here in the family court, and we’re working closely with the probation department,” Orleans County District Attorney Joseph Cardone said during the conference. “We’ll have initial contact with them, work with the families who have been cooperative in this manner, but we’re going to spend the next several weeks in family court.”

Much of the conversations between the suspects played out through various social media apps, including Discord. Nenni warned parents while it is easier said than done, keep a close eye on children’s phones. 

The investigation is still ongoing.

 

Photo of the Week

Taken by Vinny Croce:
Staff Photographer

Author List