PLAQUEMINE, LA (WAFB) - A student is being charged with terrorism after posting a threatening image of himself holding a firearm to Snapchat.
Authorities in Iberville Parish are investigating to find out who added threatening words to the Snapchat photo, causing panic for many parents.
Sheriff Brett Stassi says an 8th grader at MSA West in Plaquemine took a photo of himself with his dad's guns Wednesday. He added the gun safe was locked, but the boy's older brother opened it. This student is being charged with terrorism and faces expulsion as well. The student claims that while he did post the photo, he did not add the threatening text to it. The student was released into his mother's custody.
Investigators say the boy sent the photo to a few friends on Snapchat. They emphasized the boy did not add the threatening words to it. Apparently, after he sent the original photos out, someone added the words, "Don't go to school tomorrow" to one of the pictures and sent it out to more people.
According to Supt. Arthur Joffrion, a student notified the school director about the photo and that's when administrators contacted the Iberville Parish Sheriff's Office around 9:30 p.m.
Stassi says he sent deputies to the student's house. He added they confiscated all of the guns and interviewed the child.
The sheriff's office is now trying to figure out who added the words to the photo. After they determine that, the District Attorney's office will determine what charges those individuals will face.
"We are meeting with the District Attorney's office as we speak," said Sheriff Stassi. "Taking a picture with a gun, I don't really think there's a charge that would come into play with just having a photo of a gun or a photo of you and the firearm. But when it's manipulated with this verbiage that changes the whole operation of the thing. But still, I think that [these] are all young children and they will be brought to the courts and they will be made aware of the problems that they caused."
Joffrion says the school sent out a Robo call to parents of MSA West students alerting them that there is no threat to students and staff.
Officials say extra IPSO deputies are at the school in case students have questions.