April 12, 2006
Law enforcement has been tight lipped about the details surrounding four students’ plans to blow up Albemarle County schools but finally we are learning more about what the kids were plotting as one of the teens involved in the plan was sentenced.
He may not have been the mastermind behind the plan, but prosecutors say the 15-year-old that is guilty in this case would have carried out the plan had it not been thwarted by police. A judge agreed and committed him to juvenile detention for his role in the bombing plot.
The teen in shackles and chains and tears running down his face told the judge he was sorry and he wanted to go home but he won’t get to go home.
“We're very disappointed,” was all the teen’s father would say leaving the court room.
His father was emotional as he watched his son taken off to juvenile detention.
“When a juvenile is committed to the department of juvenile justice, the department then does an evaluation to determine the length of stay [and] the appropriate juvenile center for the juvenile to be committed to,” said Albemarle County Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Darby Lowe.
The teen's sentence Wednesday doesn't necessarily mean he will be put away for the rest of his young adult life, but the Commonwealth argued that for the safety of the community he should be committed.
She referred to statements the teen made describing his plan as "another Columbine." She said he made statements to police saying “we were going to go to school and kill everyone we saw unless they were our friends.” The Commonwealth told the judge the teen said he was going to do it for “the power over people” and “the rush.”
The teen’s dad testified his son was a good kid but the judge said sometimes good kids do bad things.
“Although there was a lot of evidence of character, the offenses here presented such a grave danger, and such a tragedy would have occurred had [the juveniles] committed the acts,” said Lowe.
The teen’s father said he will be appealing the courts ruling.
The judge said she will review the teens’ progress in 60 days.