Hawkins County parents worried and terrified by news of school s

Hawkins County parents worried and terrified by news of school shooting threat

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Hawkins County parents say they were frightened to learn about two teens planning a mass shooting at Volunteer High School. Hawkins County parents say they were frightened to learn about two teens planning a mass shooting at Volunteer High School.
"In the journals there were detailed plans of attack, stating the maximum amount of students in the lunch room and hallway, where to block the exits, and to eliminate the SRO first," said Sheriff Ronnie Lawson at a press conference Friday morning. "In the journals there were detailed plans of attack, stating the maximum amount of students in the lunch room and hallway, where to block the exits, and to eliminate the SRO first," said Sheriff Ronnie Lawson at a press conference Friday morning.
By LAURA HALM
6 News Reporter

CHURCH HILL (WATE) - Hawkins County parents say they were frightened to learn about two teens planning a mass shooting at Volunteer High School. The Hawkins County Sheriff's Office says investigators found a journal with floor plans of the school and details of their plan to attack students and staff.

The teens are now facing charges of conspiracy to commit first degree murder, conspiracy to commit an act of terrorism and possession of explosive components.

Previous story: Sheriff: teens planned Columbine-style attack at Hawkins County school

It's taken months for investigators to collect enough evidence to build this case, and they say this wasn't just a threat, it was a planned attack.

Parents in Hawkins County told 6 News they're heartbroken, worried, and terrified by the news of a foiled school shooting.

"My daughter, she's worried about it because she knows she'll be there in a couple years and she's got a lot of friends there," said Church Hill resident Barbara Grooms.

An employee with Youth Villages Counseling Services alerted deputies in October that a teen was planning a mass shooting at Volunteer High School waiting until his senior year to carry it out.

"In the journals there were detailed plans of attack, stating the maximum amount of students in the lunch room and hallway, where to block the exits, and to eliminate the SRO first," said Sheriff Ronnie Lawson at a press conference Friday morning.

Investigators searched the teen's home finding guns, firecrackers, and what looked like gun powder.

"This young man was obsessed with the Columbine shooting in Colorado in 1999. He also took the time to study their plan of attack and he found their mistakes that they made that he would not," said Sheriff Lawson.

The Hawkins County Sheriff's Office says the 15 year old was recruiting other teens to help in his attack and a second juvenile has been arrested.

"The safety and security of all students is the highest priority to Hawkins County Schools. We've taken all necessary precautions to ensure the safety of our students," said Hawkins County Director of Schools Steve Starnes.

The news is rattling parents.

"It's the same time as Columbine happened. It's just a scary thought. Hits close to home," said Jamie Raleigh.

Parents say they're thankful this planned school shooting was discovered before it was too late.

"It's a shame what those kids are having to go through, but it's better than all the killings they could have done," said Grooms.

Both teen boys are in state custody and Sheriff Lawson says they were never a threat to the general public.
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