The parents of two South Pasadena teens charged with plotting a mass shooting at their school apologized to the community Wednesday for their sons’ alleged behavior.
“My wife and I would like to apologize to the whole community, every student, every parent every faculty,” the stepfather of one of the teens told NBC4 outside the juvenile court. “We do not condone [that] kind of behavior.”
His son denied the charges -- the equivalent of a not-guilty plea in juvenile court.
The boys, who are 16 and 17, each face one count of making criminal threats, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. Their names have not been released.
The charges come after police launched an investigation last week after receiving information that the two suspects had shared their plans with another teen, who they then threatened to kill, prosecutors said.
The father of the second boy charged in the case released a statement to the media after the court appearance, which was not open to the public:
“We were greatly saddened and disappointed of the allegations. We would like to apologize to the community of South Pasadena. We would like to thank the person who stepped forward, who had the courage, to advise the authorities and thank South Pasadena Police Department for their professionalism and their kindness to us during this difficult issue.”
The family requested that the media not use their name.
South Pasadena Police Chief Art Miller said at a news conference Tuesday that the boys had a “very specific plan on how they were going to carry out their sick mission.”
“As they put it, they just wanted to kill as many people as possible," Miller said. There was no target date for the alleged attack plan, he said.
The boys, who were arrested Monday, had researched weaponry, explosives and methods for disarming people, and "very coldheartedly" discussed their plans with each other online, he said.
The teens also told investigators they were willing to die in a shootout with police, Miller said.
On Monday, police served search warrants at the boys' home. No weapons were found, officials said. The FBI was assisting with the ongoing forensics investigation.
South Pasadena High School, which has about 1,500 students, resumed classes Thursday. The school's principal, Janet Anderson, sent parents and employees an email late Tuesday saying that the school would see an increased police presence as students return from summer break.
"That presence is for reassurance and security and not due to any ongoing threat," she wrote.
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