A student who threatened to kill fellow Madison Memorial High School students with his new assault rifle, which he planned to conceal under his long, black trench coat, said they had ``constantly harassed and ostracized'' him.
The 16-year-old's statements to police about his hatred of high school were contained in a juvenile court petition filed Monday, charging him with disorderly conduct.
Police said his father, who lives in another county, had recently bought the boy an SKS semiautomatic assault rifle for deer hunting this week. The weapon is stored at the boy's father's house, police officer David Gouran said.
The boy was ordered held in secure custody pending a psychological evaluation and a juvenile court hearing, which is slated for today.
Memorial High School Principal Pamela Nash said that to her knowledge, there were no signs the boy was troubled.
He was a manager of a school sports team, a post that indicates a healthy connection to school and to student athletes, she said. ``I don't know of any specific harassment claims filed with any of the assistant principals,'' she added, ``and in the past few years, we've had a specific `respect' theme at Memorial High School.''
The boy has been suspended and will be recommended for expulsion, Nash said. ``It's tough for his family. It's tough for him and it's tough for us, who have to make the call.''
The petition said he made the threats on the school bus Thursday afternoon when asked why he was wearing a long, black, leather trench coat.
The boy said the coat was an easy place to hide his assault rifle and that he was planning on coming back to school and killing people, according to the petition.
Such trench coats were worn by Columbine High School students Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, who fatally shot 13 schoolmates before killing themselves last spring in Littleton, Colo.
The Memorial student repeated the threat Friday and a fellow student decided to inform the principal, the petition said. The boy later told school educational resource officer John Koster ``he has felt picked on, harassed, that he is very lonely and isolated and he wants people to leave him alone,'' it said.