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Long-term consequences possible after mass shooting "joke"

It is not unusual for kids to make inappropriate jokes. They may think they are simply being funny when they are actually putting others at risk or presenting a cause for alarm. In some cases, a joke can go too far, and a juvenile could end up facing charges and possible long-term consequences for his or her actions.

This type of situation is currently affecting one teenager in Florida. Reports indicated that a 13-year-old boy was participating in a group chat on social media when he allegedly stated that he was going to "shoot up" a middle school. One of the other individuals in the group chat presumably became concerned over the comment and informed adults about it. As a result, authorities went to the teen's home.

The boy reportedly told police that he only made the comment as a joke. However, the state now imposes a felony charge for threats regarding mass shootings, and as a result, the teen is now facing such a charge in relation to making a false report concerning the use of a weapon in a violent manner. It was unclear whether he was still in custody at the time of the report.

If convicted for such a charge, the Florida teen could face serious long-term consequences. As his parents undoubtedly do not want that outcome for their son, they may want to take the time to find out reliable information regarding possible criminal defense options. Obtaining information from local legal resources could help them in this pursuit of knowledge and assistance.

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Thomas G. Fallis, P.A.
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