A 13-year-old boy is facing criminal charges for allegedly planning a mass shooting at a synagogue in Ohio, the New York Post reported. According to court documents, the teenager was allegedly devising a plan to ''complete a mass shooting'' at Temple Israel in Canton, Ohio in September. He posted detailed plans of the attack on Discord, a messaging platform popular among gamers.
The boy's alleged plot was discovered on September 1 after Discord reported the teenager to the FBI. The investigation led to the teenager's arrest.
"Discord's Counter-Extremism analysts proactively detected, removed, and reported this user to the FBI's National Threat Operations Center, which is what led to the user's arrest. We have a zero-tolerance policy against hate and violent extremism, and when we see it, we take immediate action. It is a top priority for Discord to ensure a safe experience for our users," John Redgrave, Discord's vice president of trust & safety, said in a statement to ABC News.
The boy, who has not been publicly named because he's a minor, now faces juvenile misdemeanor charges of inducing panic and disorderly conduct. He is set to go to trial on December 20 in Stark County Family Court.
As of now, it is unclear whether any weapons were found when the teenager was arrested, and how serious his intentions were.
A statement from the Anti-Defamation League's chapter in Cleveland, about 60 miles from Ohio, said the group was ''horrified'' to learn of the plans to shoot up Temple Israel.
''For young people like this suspect, we hope this can be a teachable moment. Hate and threats on social media, as in real life, cannot and will not be tolerated,'' the statement said, as per The Guardian. They also thanked law enforcement for the ''thorough investigation.''
Post a commentThe incident came more than a month before Hamas' October 7 attack on Israel and Israel's ensuing war in Gaza. According to recent FBI statistics, antisemitic hate crimes rose 25 percent from 2021 to 2022. The Anti-Defamation League, an organisation that advocates against antisemitism, said they received reports of 3,697 antisemitic incidents across the US in 2022.