Tomball High School student charged after posting image of AR-15 as joke, police say

TOMBALL, Texas (KTRK) -- Police say a joke posted to social media has a Tomball High School student in a lot of trouble.

The Tomball Police Department announced the arrest of a 17-year-old student on its Facebook page Wednesday night.

Investigators said Tomball High School administrators were made aware of a threatening social media post around 1 p.m.

A student was taken into custody by a school resource officer after he allegedly admitted to posting the image of an AR-15 to social media with the caption, "Don't come to school tomorrow."

That was enough for Tomball ISD to launch an investigation.

The senior was brought in and said it was all just a joke toward other students.

Police didn't think it was funny and neither do parents.

"I think there should be zero tolerance for it. I think in the society we live in today, we can't afford to make 'funny threats'," said Tomball parent Jenna Sacchieri.

The teen has been charged with a third degree felony for exhibiting a firearm.

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From rumors to social media posts to verbal threats and law enforcement is not playing around.

The Tomball Police Department, along with Tomball ISD, said they put student safety as a high priority.

Parents in Tomball say they fully support the decision to arrest a 17-year-old senior who allegedly admitted to posting a school threat online.

In an email sent to parents Wednesday, the school principal said, "Late in the school day, we received a report there was a social media post stating a possible threat to Tomball HS."

The principal went on to say students reported the post to school officials.

Parents are now being urged to tell their kids posting threats will not be seen as a laughing matter.

"We can talk about guns, we can talk about mental illness, we can talk about social media, all these things, but if we don't have that root understanding that we are not supposed to hate or harm our neighbor but help them in every physical need, that's the big problem," said Pastor Chris Hull from Zion Lutheran Church.

Incredibly, there have been at least 21 schools in our area that have investigated threats of school violence since the shooting that killed 17 at a Florida high school.

Tomball police addressed the issue on their Facebook page overnight saying, "Threats of any kind will not be tolerated nor will they be taken lightly. In light of the recent school shootings in Parkland, Florida, please take the time to speak to your children. Explain to them how threats, such as this, are a direct violation of the law."

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