Woman: Gun incident at school was 'political statement'

Back to business as usual at Ashley Hall Tuesday (WCIV)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) - The woman who was charged with attempted murder outside a private school in downtown Charleston on Monday told a bond court judge the incident was part of a political statement.

Alice Boland said she had problems in her life with religion and race and pulling a gun and pointing it at an Ashley Hall School administrator was how she responded.

However, the 28-year-old said she never hurt anyone, she "only threatened people." Boland did pull the trigger, but she said that she would have been firing at random, not at one particular person.

"I wasn't going to murder anyone," she told the bond court judge.

At the time of the incident, there were approximately 50 children and school officials outside the school and getting ready to go home for the day.

The gun was defective; she admitted that in court, saying it was not capable of firing. Police have not said what prevented the gun from firing. But the affidavit shows the gun, a Taurus PT-22, was loaded.

Police reports show that Boland owned the gun.

According to the affidavit, she pointed the gun and pulled the trigger several times at Mary Schweers, the director of the Upper School at Ashley Hall.

The affidavit also says Boland pointed the gun at Chris Hughes, an English teacher at the school, "pointing the muzzle to the ground and pulling the trigger multiple times."

Her bond was set at $900,000.

According to Head of School Jill Muti, a records search found "no connection that the woman carrying the handgun, Alice Boland, was in any way affiliated with the Ashley Hall community" and they don't believe Boland was targeting any specific person.

"All of our current information points towards this being a random incident," said Muti.

She also said that Ashley Hall will be supporting any prosecution that comes from the charges pressed by police.

According to Charleston police, Boland, of Beaufort, was charged with attempted murder,{} unlawful carrying of a firearm and possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime after she allegedly pointed a gun at an Ashley Hall School official.

Boland has been institutionalized in the past, officials said.

According to police reports, one of the responding officers dealt with Boland two years prior. The report states she was acting strange near a school.