College Place, WA – A Washington mother turned her 17-year-old son in to police after she discovered he was plotting to carry out a mass shooting at his high school.
The woman, identified only as Nicole, said she was devastated when she came across her son’s journal and read about his horrific plans, CBS News reported.
The teen wrote that he wanted to attack College Place High School on April 20, 2020, because it will be the 21st anniversary of the Columbine High School mass shooting, KCPQ reported.
He said he planned to detonate propane and pipe bombs, and that he would use multiple firearms to “execute survivors” and “blast anyone in sight,” according to KUMA.
“Kill everyone possible, fight to the death,” one entry read. “Kill self after maximum damage.”
The teen also wrote about a plot to murder his mother and her boyfriend, KUMA reported.
Officers located several notebooks with entries about murder and suicide during a search of the teen’s room.
They also seized two books – “The Truth Behind Death at Columbine,” and “The Anarchist Cookbook,” KUMA reported.
“We did not locate any firearms or explosives in the teen’s possession. However, we did locate literature on how to develop explosives and other weapons,” College Place Police Officer Dylan Schmick told HuffPost.
Police arrested the teen without incident when he returned home from school on Oct. 1, according to KUMA.
He was charged with threats to bomb or injure property and felony harassment, and was being held at the Walla Walla County Juvenile Justice Center, KUMA reported.
Nicole said she knows she did the “right thing” by turning her son in to protect others, but said that she still feels like she has “done something wrong,” CBS News reported.
“It wasn’t easy,” she said, adding that she loves her son. “It takes a lot to do what I did.”
The mother said her son told her he has been struggling with depression, and that she believes the safest place for him right now is behind bars.
“I’m worried about his mental health and he needs help,” she told CBS News. “The truth hurts sometimes.”
College Place Police Chief Troy Tomaras said that Nicole’s decision to act was “courageous,” and that she likely saved many innocent people’s lives as a result.
“It’s clearly very emotional for her,” Chief Tomaras told CBS News. “She loves her son… She’s parenting. That’s what we need parents to do.”
“This was not an easy thing to do, but it was the right thing to do,” the chief added, according to KCPQ. “The mother wanted to prevent others from being hurt and wants her son to get the help he needs.”