Teens charged in threat against James Island school

(Brandon Geier/WCIV)

By Valencia

JAMES ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) -- Two 14-year-old students have been charged with conspiracy to commit a felony after allegedly threatening to blow up James Island Charter High School.

"Having eight kids of my own, and I've had kids that have had troubles, and I think that's very harsh," said Robin Raybourne, who has a daughter in the 11th grade at the school.

The boy and girl - who have not been identified - were reportedly overheard last week talking about blowing up the school. The incident was relayed to school officials and police searched the homes of the students Monday.

Late Monday afternoon, police investigators searched the school but found nothing.

"I think they were probably just joking around because a lot of people joke around about that kind of stuff and nobody takes it seriously," said Dacia Gadsden, Raybourne's 17-year old daughter.

Charles Francis, a spokesman for the Charleston Police Department, said the teens are being held in the Charleston County Juvenile Detention Center on Headquarters Road.

Francis said no "devices or materials to create a device were found at the homes of the students." However, computers belonging to the students were confiscated.

In a police report, investigators said both students blamed the other for the idea of placing bombs inside the school. The students told police no action was taken on the plan, investigators said.

"Sometimes in our society we have a tendency to be over zealous in punishing," said Raybourne.{}"[Police] You need to have an understanding of what it is that may be kind of drove this kind of conversation."

While some parents, like{}Raybourne, said the charges against the teens were too harsh, some fellow students{}said they believe the pair got what they deserved.

"I think they deserve it cause they tried to put our life in danger in school and I don't like that," said James Hamilton, a 10th grader at James Island Charter High School.

Police say there are a number of ways to report an emergency. Among them, calling Crime Stoppers at 554-1111. Or, you can go to the Crime Stoppers website.

Tips sent to Crime Stoppers can be anonymous.

Police will also take tips texted to them at 274637. Start the text with "CSL," for Crime Stoppers of the Lowcountry.