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Drawings of Weapons Led To New Jersey Student's Arrest 630

First time accepted submitter gannebraemorr writes with this news, snipped from a CBS News report out of New Jersey:"'The Superintendent of the Greater Egg Harbor Regional High School District said around 2 pm Tuesday, a 16 year old student demonstrated behavior that caused concern. A teacher noticed drawings of what appeared to be weapons in his notebook. School officials made the decision to contact authorities. Police removed the 16-year-old boy from Cedar Creek High School in Galloway Township Tuesday afternoon after school officials became concerned about his behavior. The student was taken to the Galloway Township Police Department. Police then searched the boy's home on the 300 block of East Spencer Lane and found several electronic parts and several types of chemicals that when mixed together, could cause an explosion, police say. The unidentified teen was charged with possession of a weapon an [sic] explosive device and the juvenile was placed in Harbor Fields.' If 'chemicals that when mixed together, could cause an explosion' is a crime, I'm pretty sure everyone's cleaning cabinets are evidence just waiting to be found. Bottle of Coke and Mentos... BRB, someone knocking at the door."
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Drawings of Weapons Led To New Jersey Student's Arrest

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  • Great! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by jargonburn ( 1950578 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:23AM (#42368533)
    Think of how safe everyone will be when EVERYONE is locked up!
    • Re:Great! (Score:5, Funny)

      by transporter_ii ( 986545 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:44AM (#42368623) Homepage

      A more workable plan would be to divide the country in half and pay one half to watch the other half. We would kill unemployment and crime overnight.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Only in the United States would people be this paranoid. Terrorists kicked your asses and are still winning. This kind of irrational fear is evidence of that.

      I am so glad that I moved out of your cesspool country and renounced the US citizenship I once shamefully carried. I recommend others do the same before it's too late and you are no longer allowed to leave.
      • Re:Great! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Runaway1956 ( 1322357 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @01:19PM (#42369997) Homepage Journal

        This post pisses me off. Not because it's wrong - but because it's so right. The terrorists have made weepy-whiny pussies of us. FFS, what went wrong in the last fifty years? Less than ten percent of the population has a pair all of a sudden. "Ohhhh - some Arab might want to hurt me. I know! We'll start groping and offending everyone who flies into or out of our nation, that will prevent anyone hurting me!

    • Re:Great! (Score:5, Informative)

      by Seumas ( 6865 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @12:39PM (#42369707)

      Though, in the 1980s, we had a librarian in grade school who would punish you for drawing even the most crude weapon (especially a gun), the fact is that every little boy spends almost his entire childhood drawing guns, bombs, explosions, tanks, and massive battle scenes, and other gory and violent depictions. It's called being a boy. And last I checked, nobody has ever been physically harmed by a drawing or a painting.

      • Re:Great! (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Phat_Tony ( 661117 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @03:25PM (#42370839)

        I'd say about a quarter of the kids I knew in school drew pictures of guns or tanks or other violent things.

        Adam Lanza was also an honer student. While about 25% of kids draw weapons, only about 10% of kids are honor students. For higher specificity on their correlational targeting, they should arrest honor students.
        • Re:Great! (Score:4, Insightful)

          by berberine ( 1001975 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:45PM (#42372877) Homepage
          I work with Special Education kids. We have one kid that draws guns, tanks, semis, etc. nearly every day. He always has these elaborate drawings of highly weaponized semis with far too many weapons to actually be practical. He also loves zombies. This is why he draws the weapons. He always tells me, "If zombies were real, this truck would save you." It's all a bit of harmless fun for him and, thankfully, the other adults in the building know this too.

          We also had an art project due this past week. You had to list 20 likes and 10 dislikes and then draw half of them on a silhouette of yourself. He had two guns on there and told me, "I don't think it's appropriate to draw the AR-15 and 9mm after last week." It's just sad that everyone jumps to conclusions when anyone talks about weapons or draws them in a notebook.
      • Re:Great! (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Trailer Trash ( 60756 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @03:45PM (#42370973) Homepage

        Preach it, brother. When my youngest was in kindergarten his teacher wrote me a note one day that said "Joby seems to be obsessed with guns and always draws them." I wrote back "Yes, he is what's known as a "boy", and they do those things. Please contact me if you see him becoming obsessed with Barbie dolls." She never wrote back. This was a lady who's "top students" each year tended to be girls, go figure.

    • Re:Great! (Score:5, Informative)

      by CodeBuster ( 516420 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @12:41PM (#42369729)
      Exactly. It's often argued by some, especially those predisposed to emotional arguments designed to short circuit logic and reason, that a new law or rule ought to be enacted merely because it offers some forlorn hope of additional safety or security. But in their haste to do "something" these same people rarely stop to consider the unintended consequences of their actions and in so doing they fail to recognize that their new law or rule is a far greater and more pernicious evil than that which they hope to eradicate. Indeed, it's the natural tendency of society to take for granted the good things in life while regarding every misfortune that befalls them as unnecessary and preventible if only we had the right rules. Of course, before these people are finished making their new rules, the security that they'd hoped to receive as the price for their surrendered freedoms has long since failed to materialize while they've made slaves to the state of us all.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:26AM (#42368539)

    For drawing giant killer robots, ninja's, tanks, spaceships with tentacles & housing of poor construction quality when i was 8.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      When I was 8 I was planning tunnel boring machines to covertly plant nuclear bombs under cities.

      So now kids can't even draw a comic with a weapon in it. No wonder the nut jobs use well known gun free locations as their killing grounds.

      Loved a recent interview with a Texas school principal where all the school staff that qualified were carrying concealed, had electronic locks on the doors, and plenty of security cameras. Even bullying was down.

  • by ExRex ( 47177 ) <> on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:26AM (#42368541) Homepage
    If he rats them out maybe he can cut a deal.
  • by aepervius ( 535155 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:26AM (#42368543)
    At a shed , one being for the tractor the other for the plant. Having two chemical substance which when mixed can cause explosion and a few electronic part means *nothing* without a context. The question is : do the authority exagerate the context to make a case, or was it a real plan from a disturbed teenager, or was it a disturbed teenager which would never have gone further but now whatever MAY happen will be forever marked as that "insane guy which wanted to explode a school" ? Wihout further info none of us are able to say. But I am willing to bet there will be a media circus.
    • by f3rret ( 1776822 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:15AM (#42368799)

      At a shed , one being for the tractor the other for the plant. Having two chemical substance which when mixed can cause explosion and a few electronic part means *nothing* without a context. The question is : do the authority exagerate the context to make a case, or was it a real plan from a disturbed teenager, or was it a disturbed teenager which would never have gone further but now whatever MAY happen will be forever marked as that "insane guy which wanted to explode a school" ? Wihout further info none of us are able to say. But I am willing to bet there will be a media circus.

      My hypothesis:
      School calls the cops, school sounds like they're shitting their pants out of far. Cops roll heavily on the school, arrest the kid. Soon realize that the school over reacted like crazy. Rather than admit they were wrong and lose face, they apply creative interpretations of innocuous objects and come out of it looking like heroes.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      *Sounds* like what happened is that the police realized that they just raided the home of an innocent kid based on nothing much. That makes the police be/look bad. In those situations the police are very motivated to find something, anything, that will justify their actions. They don't want headlines like "Minor traumatized at police station. 10-man police raid trample kid's home with assault rifles, tear off head of long-loved teddy bear. Find nothing", even if that's exactly what happened. The police cert

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Thank you very much for being the voice of reason. Your post is, of course, the most sensible here.

      I wager that, despite Slashdot's sensationalism, the authorities began their actions out of due caution. That they are indeed cable of reason and did take context into consideration. I'm 80% sure that this was not about soap in the cabinet, but that this kid was indeed attempting to manufacture explosives. I'll take it a step further and say that, just because he may have been trying to make explosives doesn't

  • by overlook77 ( 988190 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:29AM (#42368553)
    Although the story seems disturbing, it never goes into any detail about the student's behavior which prompted the search nor does it say what exactly was found in the student's home. Without more details the story, left this vague, is borderline sensationalism. The student could have been exhibiting some extreme behavior which the school could have been subsequently been lambasted for not following through with.
    • by Rockoon ( 1252108 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:13AM (#42368789)

      it never goes into any detail about the student's behavior

      Yes it does. It says he was drawing weapons. Thats it. Thats the behavior. You are reading more into it because it violates the senses that drawing weapons in a notebook is a "behavior."

      I've read 4 or 5 news articles on this now.

      More extensive articles go into some of the background here. This is a school district that is "counseling students following last Friday’s shooting in Connecticut"

      Let me lay down what else they are doing (also from news articles:)

      1) cameras inside and outside each school;
      2) one armed school resource officer in each building;
      3) a lobby guard that runs the identification of each visitor to each school;
      4) proximity card readers for staff members, who must swipe their cards before gaining access to the building; and
      5) security officers at each school 24 hours a day, every day of the year.

      They are obviously hyper-reacting. Way over the top. 24/7/365 security, armed guards, "papers please" ... they are doing it all.

    • by dcblogs ( 1096431 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:41AM (#42368939) Journal
      If this kid was acting crazy in high school in the 1970s, my generation, he would have been sent to the principals office and possibly suspended. If the drawings were any good, the principal might have encouraged the kid to think about mechanical engineering as a career path. But today, the cops are involved, the local newspaper does a story, and screwed up kid makes national news. That, I think, is part of the problem.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:29AM (#42368555)

    That treatment will certainly help him become a well-balanced member of society.

  • by cervesaebraciator ( 2352888 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:31AM (#42368559)

    In which of the following ways would you have been arrested if your child-self had gone to school today:

    1) possession of a chemistry set;

    2) possession of a pocket knife;

    3) terroristic threatening ("Man, I'm gonna kill you at Mortal Kombat tonight.");

    4) all of the above

  • Oh my lord (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:34AM (#42368581)

    Am I glad I don't go to school in this modern age!

    Back in MY day you could bring your (real) Katana to highschool (and leave it in the office) for martial arts practice afterwards.

    I used to draw fighter jets and machine guns and all sorts of stuff when the teachers were being boring, but that was probably in grade school.

    Now if you DRAW A PICTURE OF what "appears to be" a weapon and have an interest in electronics and chemistry you get charged.

    I guess that liking science before college is going to be outlawed soon...

  • by james_shoemaker ( 12459 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:41AM (#42368613)

    I'm sure glad they weren't this paranoid when I was a kid. I remember sketching various nuclear weapon designs and discussing them with my physics teacher after class. I suppose it was OK because I didn't have a supply of fissionable material.

  • by quenda ( 644621 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:45AM (#42368627)

    In related news, half the school was arrested on suspicion of rape, after evidence of drawing penises was found.

  • by jayhawk88 ( 160512 ) <> on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:46AM (#42368641)

    We're going to spend the next 10 years as a nation obsessing over guns in schools. We're going to talk non-stop about arming teachers, arming janitors, putting cops with assault rifles in the halls, defining exactly what assault rifles actually are, glorifying the idea that those with guns stop crimes, making movies and TV shows about the topic, design special gun models for school protection, and perhaps even speculate that students themselves should be allowed to carry guns for their own protection.

    But on the other hand, the first time any student mentions the word "gun" in class, they're pulled from class, suspended for weeks, arrested, put in psychiatric care and scarred for life. Seriously, this is like one level down from the brainwashing scene in A Clockwork Orange.

  • Phew... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by knarf ( 34928 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:47AM (#42368645) Homepage

    Imagine what they'd have found in my room back in the '80s... Chemicals of all sorts, the more boom the more fun after all... electronic components disassembled from old broken unrepairable stuff and sorted into categories, ready to be assembled in new things. This including 'scary' stuff like CTV line transformers etc. Half-repaired electronics. A charged tractor battery under the bed with some carbon rods (from old batteries) to be used in carbon arc light experiments. A functional pulse jet engine, scarily-looking, cobbled together with moped parts to be auto-starting. An air gun. An electric guitar made from more moped parts and some pay phone speakers for pick-ups. Need I go on?

    And to think that I've never even had so much as a speeding ticket...

    Of course I lived in the Netherlands, and it was 30 years ago...

    • by mikael ( 484 )

      You should write a book on all these projects - 20 electronics experiments for a rainy day. Especially the guitar made from moped parts.

  • by macraig ( 621737 ) <> on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:49AM (#42368665)

    Unless there's a boatload of details absent from that account, it really is time for me to find another country to call home... while I can still emigrate without being renditioned for being a traitor/terrorist.

    • by LVSlushdat ( 854194 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @11:00AM (#42369025)

      I'm 62, and the direction this country is going makes me absolutely sick to my stomach, but if you were to leave for another country, where would it be? As bad as America is getting, its still FAR better than 99.99% of the rest of the world. Take Australia for example.. I visited there twice back in the 70s, once on US Army RnR from Vietnam and once on temporary duty with my Army unit, for a total of just over 2 weeks. I was so taken with the people, the VAST open spaces, and the opportunity, I came very close to emigrating there. When I was there I read the papers (Sydney) and saw virtually no violent crime during both visits. But now, I read that violent crime is WAY up, since the Australian people have, essentially, been disarmed, like Britain. Not to mention, all of the Orwellian stuff that the current Australian (and UK) governments are constantly trying to shove down the peoples throat... TL;DR; I have NO idea where you could go that's any better than the USA..

      • by am 2k ( 217885 )

        I think you're narrowing your view a bit too much. I agree that UK is going down the same insanity route as the US (dunno about Australia, haven't followed that too much), but there are hundreds of other countries on the planet. For example, I liked Amsterdam very much when I visited it this year, although this city might be a huge culture shock for typical US citizens.

      • There are lots of places to go actually. It sounds like you haven't traveled enough (recently) to know that. Would it make you feel a little better to know that much of the rest of the world is not paranoid and afraid like we are here in the US?

        No strip searches or sexual violations to get on airplanes. No one arrested for drawing something or saying something. No roadblocks on the roads. I'm not sure I could 'prove' that most of the other countries I have traveled in and lived in really are freer, but they

  • by Vinegar Joe ( 998110 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @09:55AM (#42368693)

    I remember drawing pictures and B-52s and mushroom clouds. These days I'd be in Gitmo being waterboarded.

  • Thought Crime. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:02AM (#42368723)

    "If 'chemicals that when mixed together, could cause an explosion' is a crime, I'm pretty sure everyone's cleaning cabinets are evidence just waiting to be found."

    This is the reality of how the BATFE interprets the laws surrounding guns and explosives; the regulation of both is derived from some of the same laws. Having the parts to make something constitutes intention to make it, and is punished the same as if you had made it.

    The state of BATFE's regulatory interpretations of the law allow for farmers, or even just gardeners, to be prosecuted for having ammonium nitrate fertilizer and fuel because they could be assembled into a bomb, regardless of whether they had a detonator, or knowledge of how to do it, or intent, or a motive. It gets even more confusing and nonsensical when it comes to their published regulation of gun parts. If you own a pistol, and a means by which to attach a butt-stock to it, then you're in possession of an unregistered short barreled rifle, regardless of whether you've ever assembled them.

    Thought crime is alive and well in the BATFE, and has been for decades.

  • "best" part (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:06AM (#42368753)

    "Cedar Creek opened in September 2010 as a magnet school with programs focusing on engineering and environmental sciences and specializing in hands-on learning."

    • Re:"best" part (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:10AM (#42368779)

      "Ciccariello said that the student was not in conflict with anyone"

      "Police Chief Pat Moran stressed Tuesday night no threats were made by the student and there was no indication there was any danger posed to anyone or property at the school"

      "There was no indication he was making a bomb, or using a bomb or detonating a bomb"

      but still "arrested ... on charges of having chemicals at his home that could be made into a bomb"

  • by davydagger ( 2566757 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:34AM (#42368899)
    Where does this sound familiar from?

    the new post columbine hysteria has started. They are going to ruin far more kids lives than kids who died in the last shooting, or shootings in general.

    We need to put our foot down, and stop this cycle of scape-goat finding based on stereotypes being passed off as valid research and response NOW.
  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna ( 970587 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:36AM (#42368911) Journal
    If you outlaw pictures of weapons then only outlaws will have pictures of weapons.

    oh. wait.. it did not come out right.

    Every classroom should be secured by a policeman armed with a picture of a weapon. How about that!

  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna ( 970587 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:37AM (#42368923) Journal
    Why don't we sentence that student to a picture of a prison.
    • by hduff ( 570443 )

      Why don't we sentence that student to a picture of a prison.

      Finally, a rational response.

  • by Zero_DgZ ( 1047348 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:37AM (#42368925)

    When I was in high school, I had sketchbooks that I filled to the brim with detailed drawings of planes, battlemechs, rockets, Warhammer dudes, and yes, lots and lots of weapons. Many of them attached to planes or in the form of swords and axes being held by fantasy roleplaying types, but also plain-old modern day guns. I think I turned out pretty well, and in my entire life I've never even so much murdered anybody. I was even still in school when the Columbine shootings went down, and even after that fact with all the paranoia swirling around, nobody cared about me or my notebook. Do you know why? Because it didn't fucking matter. It's what boys of that age tend to do, and back then people still managed to understand this.

    This is knee-jerk paranoid reactionist ego-stroking BULLSHIT of the highest caliber. This poor kid's harassment and arrest is in no way, shape, or form designed to keep anyone safe or protect anybody from anything, but to intentionally scare people and stoke a bunch of "it could happen here" sensationalistic paranoia for the sake of inflating some school administrator's ego. The real intent of this, which is going to have real-world consequences of ruining this kids future -- Which, I hasten to point out, this superintendent and his cronies in no way care about or will show responsibility for -- is propaganda. To create the appearance that the school administration is "doing something!" and being "proactive and tough on violence!" to direct attention away from the fact that, back here in reality, this kid's school is undoubtedly zero percent safer today than it was last Friday.

    This is why we are constantly blindsided by headline grabbing violence int his country: We are SO paranoid about not letting the imaginary "bad guy" in the front door that we're diverting all our attention to chasing shadows and tilting at these goddamned windmills. Meanwhile, the real enemy is free to sneak in the back door whenever he feels like it.

    (Obligatory "that's what she said," by the way.)

    The people who did this to that kid are the ones who need to be arrested -- every last one of them. Stripped of their ranks, stripped of their certifications, their badges taken away, and relegated to flipping burgers at McDonald's for the rest of their pathetic little lives, because people who straight-facedly make such poor decisions as these have NO BUSINESS BEING IN POSITIONS OF AUTHORITY, period.

  • America (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Patch86 ( 1465427 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @10:50AM (#42368985)

    I find America a very baffling place, sometimes. In one news story, a child whose parents belonged to the militia movement who were stockpiling weapons goes on a killing spree in a school, and one of the most vocal responses is "it wouldn't happen if only there were more guns in school- armed teachers, armed kids, armed minimum wage guards on the door!". And anyone suggesting that gun possession might be a bad thing is shouted down for trampling on our freedoms. Then in the next news story, it's a criminal offence to be a teenager who draws weapons and has common household chemicals in their house. Also, we should ban (in no particular order)- violent video games, nudity in films, rap music, and skirts that end too far above the knee.

    Very odd place.

  • Now (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @12:22PM (#42369555) Homepage Journal
    More illegal to draw a gun than own one.
  • by Telephone Sanitizer ( 989116 ) on Saturday December 22, 2012 @08:47PM (#42372465) []

    He drew a glove with flames on it.

    From what I've read elsewhere, he was an honors student, a scout and he played on a Christian basketball team.

    What profile does that fit?

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