Chesterton Tribune



Police: Two Duneland boys detained after one makes school threat to Siri then puts it on Facebook

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Two Duneland juvenile boys were being held at the Porter County Juvenile Detention Center after police said that photos of the two of them holding guns were posted to social media, along with a screenshot of Siri’s response to a query made by one of them: “I am going to shoot up a school.”

The incident occurred on Thursday and was investigated by the Valparaiso, Chesterton, and Porter PDs.

All police agencies concur that the post was a joke, that there was no credible threat to any school at any time, and that the boys currently have no access to firearms.

According to the VPD, a 13-year-old Chesterton Middle School student was visiting family in Valparaiso on Thursday when he told Siri on his iPhone, “I am going to shoot up a school.” Siri’s response--based on the boy’s location at the time--was to identify multiple schools in Valparaiso. The boy then screenshot the query and Siri’s response and posted it to social media, along with photos of himself and a friend, a 14-year-old Duneland boy, holding guns.

Those photos are now believed to have been taken in the fall of 2018, the PPD said.

The 13-year-old’s contacts subsequently reported the post to the CPD, which contacted VPD. In the course of interviewing the 13-year-old, VPD detectives developed information on the 14-year-old boy, who was then interviewed by PPD and CPD detectives. The 14-year-old “acknowledged that the photographs were taken but denied involvement in making any threats,” the PPD.

Both boys were transported to JDC on a delinquency charge of intimidation. The 14-year-old is also facing a delinquency charge of criminal recklessness, based on the photos of him posing with firearms.

The VPD said that the 13-year-old “made no direct threat to a specific person, school, or school system,” and that he “has no access to weapons and posted the picture on social media as a joke.”

“The threat is not believed to be credible at this time,” the VPD added. “However, these types of communication are taken very seriously by the Valparaiso Police Department and our community. We continue to work with the Valparaiso Community Schools to ensure the safety of the students and staff.”

The PPD concurred: “These threats are obviously taken very seriously and handled accordingly.”


Posted 2/1/2019





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