12-year-old Sikh boy spent three days in a juvenile detention centre after backpack bomb accusation
A 12-YEAR-OLD Sikh boy has spent three days in a juvenile detention centre after his classmate said his school backpack contained a bomb.
Police stormed Nichols Junior High School in Arlington, Texas, after being alerted that Armaan Singh Sarai was allegedly planning on blowing up his school with a bomb.
When the boy was questioned by the authorities he admitted he had mentioned a bomb, but claimed he was only joking around with one of his classmates.
“I thought it was a joke, so I started laughing and he started laughing,” he toldInternational Business Times.
“The next thing you know, I’m reading with my friend, and police come in, grab me and take me outside.”
Despite a search of his bag finding no explosives, the seventh grader was still taken to the county’s juvenile detention centre.
A Facebook post made by his cousin, Ginee Haer, revealed his parents were not notified their son had been arrested.
“Worried & frightened at home, his family was concerned as to why he had not reached home right after school. They started calling every police department in the area, only to find out he was sent to a Juvenile facility,” the post read.
A spokesman from the Arlington school district refuted Mr Haer’s claims.
“We did try to contact the parents Friday afternoon, and they were aware,” they toldThe Telegraph.
The case has striking similarities to the October arrest of a 14-year-old American Muslim boy after a homemade clock he took to his school was mistaken for a possible bomb.
Despite the comparisons, a spokesman from the local police said the department has stood by the decision to arrest the young boy.
“Unfortunately, when things like this occur, we do take this very seriously,” he toldthe local NBC affiliate.
“Whether it’s written or spoken, when it crosses the line and causes this type of alarm, this panic in the community, that’s when it really rises into this terroristic threat statute that’s on the books.”