Four Teenagers Admit Planning Massacre at School in Cleveland

From Associated Press

Four teenage boys have admitted plotting a Columbine-style attack to kill anyone who crossed their path at South High School, prosecutors said Wednesday.

The plot was averted when a student tipped off school officials that the teens planned to open fire Oct. 29, the day of the school’s homecoming dance and football game. Officials closed the school and, while police found no weapons or bombs in the building, they confiscated a total of eight guns from two of the suspects’ houses.

Police also found two maps that showed positions for each shooter in the school and a list of possible students to recruit for the planned massacre.


Two 15-year-olds pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiracy to commit aggravated murder, said Cuyahoga County Prosecutor William Mason. A 14-year-old and a 15-year-old pleaded guilty to inducing panic.

Though Mayor Michael White initially said the plot appeared to be racially motivated, prosecutors said there was no evidence of that. South High, located just south of the city’s downtown, is predominantly black.

“They planned to kill an indiscriminate number of people--anyone who was present in the building,” said Blaise Thomas, assistant prosecuting attorney. “There was no planning to get one particular group and leave another alone.”

Prosecutors said the pleas were part of an agreement with the defendants.

Sentencing was set for Jan. 25, and all four could be incarcerated until age 21, the maximum penalty allowed under state juvenile law.