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HAWTHORNE ‒ A 13-year-old male student was arrested and put into juvenile custody Friday, Sept. 24, after it was determined that he falsely reported an upcoming school shooting at Interlachen Junior-Senior High School.

Earlier in the week, the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) investigated a threat to the school, which was subsequently determined to be false.

“The suspect was not responsible for the initial threat to the school, but the suspect spread rumors about there being a school shooting in small groups,” said PCSO spokesperson Allison Waters-Merritt. The student also spread rumors that the reports were not false, which were reported to school resource officers and the Sheriff’s Office.

Although the student was advised to stop spreading rumors about the impending shooting, witnesses said the student continued to talk about it, which led to authorities obtaining a warrant for his arrest on Friday.

“As we’ve said time and time again with any threats that are made to a school, we’re going to seek the highest-level charges possible so that we can keep our schools, students, faculty and families safe on campus,” Waters-Merritt said.

The suspect was arrested at his home on Friday and taken to the Volusia County Juvenile Detention Center.

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