Edmonds-Woodway students arrested following racially-charged threats

Edmonds_Woodway_HighTwo Edmonds-Woodway High School students were arrested Tuesday and booked into Snohomish County’s Denney Youth Center over “racially-charged” online threats against African-American EWHS students.

According to Edmonds police spokesman Sgt. Shane Hawley, since August 2015 the two male suspects — both Edmonds residents — ran a Facebook chat group “where they made racially-charged threats against African-American students in their school.” The comments involved detailed descriptions about how they intended to kill one of the victims, including “lynching,” Hawley said. The suspects also made threats against the student body as a whole, including efforts to “put the school on lock-down” and having “dead bodies” all over the school, he added.

As result of those comments, another student in the chat room alerted school administrators on Dec 7, after which the school notified the intended victims, then called the Edmonds Police Department. For safety reasons, the Edmonds School District immediately expelled both students while the Edmonds Police Department began the investigation.

Based on the initial reports, police then conducted a week-long investigation, gathering additional evidence and interviewing both suspects, ages 15 and 16. While the students admitted to making the comments, they denied any intention of carrying out the threats and claimed they were “just trying to be funny,” Hawley said.

“The Edmonds Police Department takes any threat complaints of this nature seriously,” Hawley said. “This sort of behavior constitutes the crime of malicious harassment under Washington State law.”

Edmonds Police Detective Sgt. Michael Richardson said “the statements made were shocking and appalling. Threats of this nature cannot be tolerated in today’s society.”

The case is still under investigation by the EPD Detective Unit.

  1. I am a parent of an EWHS student. While I am glad students notified the school on Dec. 7, I am disheartened that these boys had been spewing hate on FB since August and no one stepped forward until now. This on top of the hate speech and threats made against the WWU student body president, herself an Edmonds Woodway HS graduate, shows that we still have far to go. Post racial America is a myth and hatred, suspicion, and fear are still being taught and modeled in homes and communities big and small. I am glad the school and the police moved swiftly and strongly and these boys have been arrested. I am sure there will be many powerful conversations happening at the high school with staff, teachers, and students. Every mother I know and talk to thinks about the safety of their child/children every day they go to school… wondering if today may be the day some angry, unbalanced person or student will show up with a gun or guns and leave “dead bodies” all over the school. What a hideous reality this country has created.

  2. According to our Supreme Court, redlining and segregation has been occuring across our country by banks, developers and real estate for 30 years now………

    SEGREGATION of populations………

    Certainly a move BACKWARDS! I mistakenly thought this was unique to our town of Edmonds, but it is across the country. Racism and bigotry is alive and well. White priviledge. I believe the city of Seattle no longer even has a “Central area” African American community at all. ……Rich, White Seattle

    All of this creates hate and racism, bigotry, etc…….White Priviledge at the forefront for the select few……..and we know who you are.

    Those in the business of perpetuating this climate of segregation, know that the Supreme Court reaffirmation of the law allows no more “I didnt know I was segregating or doing that”

    Turning back the clock on the Civil Rights movement didnt just happen. Everybody must be held accountable now or the bigotry and hatred will continue. We are one nation.

    $$$$$$$$$$$$ and White priviedge! Shamefull.

    Lets not give anyone a stage for racism or bigotry anywhere. Its for those of very small minds and speaking or acting on it is gainst the law…….it’s hate speech, not freedom of speech.

    1. What I find shameful is the negative rhetoric whether you are on the ‘right’ or the ‘left.’ One of the many things I learned from the Sixties is how love, compassion, and understanding can overcome negativity. Hateful comments spews hateful responses. We are seeing how negative talk is affecting the Republican Party and dividing this country by building a higher wall of hate.
      I wonder if expelling these misguided students is only a knee-jerk reaction (I am for a no-tolerance policy, believe me) when perhaps intensive education and counseling could turn them and their friends, who believe the same thing, around. What is EWHS doing to reverse this thinking among our youth?
      Rather than constantly placing blame on “white privilege” and what is wrong with our society, can we work toward turning off the negative rhetoric and work on solutions rather than continually manifesting the belief that these problems are unsolvable?

      “Perhaps I am just a dreamer, but I am not the only one.”

      1. It’s not equal between the two parties. One stands for equality for ALL Americans. The other doesn’t. If Trump or Cruz is elected it will be a disgrace for America. There’s no if, and or buts.

  3. Those boys were just trying to be “funny”!!! That is pathetic. How about some community service so they can learn how “funny” racism and dead bodies are.

  4. Boys’ brains take longer to mature than girls’. Most are around 30 before they are ready for rational behavior. These Edmonds boys may well be influenced by the radical rhetoric they are observing in the current presidential campaign. Judging by the comments of the Republican candidates in this campaign, some males’ brains do not mature until much later than 30, and some may never be ready for prime time.

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