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Another Santa Clarita Valley teen arrested in school violence prank

Second Santa Clarita Valley teen arrested for joking about school violence on social media
Fourth teen arrested in 2 days for potential school violence threat; officials say this one was a prank

For the second time this week, a Santa Clarita Valley teenager has been arrested on suspicion of posting threats of school violence on social media, authorities said.

In the latest case, Los Angeles County sheriff's officials say a 13-year-old boy was arrested Sunday night after he used a program to send anonymous text messages to his friend that "included comments regarding school violence."

The boy’s friend didn’t know with whom he was texting so he posted a picture of the conversation on Instagram, to which someone alerted authorities. Detectives determined the anonymous texter was a Canyon High School student, who told officials he was doing it as a prank, but by the time his friend had posted the conversation on Instagram, it was too late.

Sheriff’s deputies took the teen into custody and referred him to the Los Angeles County Probation Department.

The case was similar to the unrelated arrest of another Santa Clarita Valley teen over the weekend. That incident involved a boy allegedly threatening to shoot up a local school on Instagram as a prank, causing panic among hundreds of parents.

Authorities stressed the arrest of the two teens over the weekend highlights the seriousness of school violence and how even joking about it on social media creates panic and forces authorities to investigate the threat.

Authorities have not released the identities of the teens involved, citing their ages.

The boys’ arrests came a day before South Pasadena police arrested a pair of high school students on suspicion of plotting to kill three school staff members and as many students as possible. 

For breaking California news, follow @JosephSerna.

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
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