Two Va. students accused of plotting to kill principal

Associated Press • Mar 17, 2007 at 11:30 AM

RINER, Va. - Two middle school students were charged with conspiracy to commit murder after authorities say one of them took a gun to school and at least one discussed shooting the principal, another student and the student resource officer.

Police took the boys, ages 14 and 15, into custody Friday after a student told Deputy Kirk Hendricks, Auburn Middle School's resource officer, that the boys had a gun, said Lt. Brian Wright, a spokesman for the Montgomery County sheriff's office.

A .22-caliber revolver and an undisclosed amount of ammunition were recovered, he said. It was not clear who the gun belonged to or how the boy obtained it, Wright said. He declined to say where the gun was found. No shots were fired.

"We take this seriously, and the fact that we found a gun and ammo means this wasn't just talk," Wright said.

According to a preliminary investigation, at least one of the boys talked about plans to shoot Hendricks, Principal Guylene Wood-Setzer and at least one student, Wright said. Authorities declined to say why the three were allegedly targeted.

The boys are in the custody of the New River Valley Juvenile Detention Center. Authorities are withholding their names because they are minors.

The 15-year-old was also charged with bringing a gun onto school property and possession of a firearm by someone under 18.

Wood-Setzer declined to comment when asked about the situation. Montgomery County schools Superintendent Tiffany Anderson said bringing a gun to school results in expulsion. The school has 291 students in grades six through eight. Classes continued as normal on Friday despite the incident. Wright called the student who disclosed the alleged plot a hero. "The kid did the right thing," Wright said. "That's what you want kids to do - to have the backbone to come forward. He probably saved some lives."

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