A trio of teens was charged with a violent plot to “kill everyone and anyone” at their Michigan middle school, according to court records.
Lapeer County Assistant Prosecutor David Campbell read chilling words allegedly written by Gunnar Rice in Lapper County District Court on Monday, detailing what he allegedly planned to undertake at Zemmer Middle School in Lapeer, a city of roughly 8,000 about 20 miles east of Flint.
Rice, 14, wrote that he wanted to “exterminate all the [expletive] animals at this school,” Campbell said during Monday’s arraignment, MLive.com reported. “We’ll kill everyone and anyone of our choosing.”
Rice was charged as an adult with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, using computers to commit a crime, conspiracy to commit terrorism and a false report of terrorism. Two other students, Asa Christopher Candela and Dylan Michael DeAngelis, both 15, have also been charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, using computers to commit a crime and conspiracy to commit terrorism.
Campbell also read in court what he claimed were the writings of DeAngelis, describing his role in the plot to kill at the middle school campus.
“I want them to look at me face to face with their tear-filled eyes staring right into mine while I have a gun pressed into their forehead,” Campbell said. “We are immortal.”
Relatives of all three teens were in the courtroom,reports. The three have been held since late February after one of the students allegedly sent several text messages to a friend specifying the plan to commit “mass murder” at the school, according to Lapeer County Prosecutor Michael Sharkey.
The teens, who face a possibility of life in prison if convicted, were denied bond Monday. A probable cause hearing has been scheduled in the case for Friday.
But an attorney for DeAngelis argued that her client’s writings were protected by the First Amendment, giving him the right to “write down anything that he wants into a notebook.”
“Stephen King is not arrested or incarcerated at the [Genesee Valley Regional Center] and my client shouldn’t be either,” attorney Colleen Starr said in court.
Starr said DeAngelis had perfect attendance and posed no flight risk since he doesn’t have a driver’s license.
“He has no access to weapons,” she said. “He has no access to drugs. He doesn’t even have a cellphone. The police have it now.”
An attorney for Rice claimed the reality of the case was “dramatically different” from the allegations, claiming the only weapon at the teen’s disposal was a Nerf gun that shot rubber pellets.
An attorney for Candela also claimed the charges against his client were “inflated,” telling the court that a lot of the allegations were based on “pure conjecture.”
“There were no weapons that were found or anything of a further conspiracy,” attorney Bernard Jocuns said. “There were no manifestos. There was nothing indicating anything existed of a crime or a meeting of the minds. He should be in school. He should be learning.”
Campbell disputed that assertion, saying Candela had said from the outset that “all of his actions were not a joke.”
“This defendant said we were serious from the very beginning and agreed to all of the conspiracies,” Campbell said.
Jocuns claimed many of those statements were based on an interview with police that has since been destroyed or no longer exists. CONTINUE..