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East High School terror threat suspect 'didn't fully comprehend' what she was doing

February 26, 2018 06:35 AM

Twenty-one-year-old Abigail Hernandez is charged with making terroristic threats.

Police say she announced she was coming to shoot people, on the Facebook page for East High School.

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We now know through multiple sources that Abigail Hernandez was a former student at East High but was most recently in the special education program at Edison Tech.

Those who know her say she never showed violent tendencies and didn't fully comprehend what she was doing by making a threat against this school.

“She’s not a demon. She’s a human being who was bullied and misunderstood,” said Karen Fox. Hernandez was in the same special education program as her son, Fox says she’s known her for nearly seven years.

“Sadly in that seven years, I saw her be horribly, horribly bulled. Not only about her disability but about her weight and her looks, as well,” said Fox.

Fox does not believe Hernandez could fully understand what she was doing when she allegedly made a Facebook post threatening to shoot up East High School.

Austin Goodenough is a former classmate of Abigail Hernandez, he was shocked and saddened to see her attached to the crime.

“When I heard the story and that she made a threat to my Alma Mater….my honest reaction was shock. Back then we were good friends but ever since this situation it’s come into question,” he said, adding he had blocked her on all social media platforms since her arrest.

Police say Hernandez targeted East High School in a post made on Feb. 15. on the school's Facebook page. During their investigation, they discovered a firearm but it is unclear who it belonged to.

“It is scary. We got no notification, no phone call, no letter. Usually the school sends us a robo-call and we got nothing,” expressed Cassandra Singleton who has a daughter who attends East High School.

Singleton is understanding of the fact Hernandez may have a learning disability, but does not understand why parents were never alerted of the threat.

Parents of students who go to Edison Tech saying it expressed sympathy for the shooter responsible for the rampage in Florida that killed 17 people. Fox says the Edison Tech student simply wanted to fit in and never showed any sign of violence.

Police tell us the threat came to light a week ago on Thursday, leading to her arrest on Tuesday.

It wasn't until just before 5 p.m. on Friday that police alerted the public of the potential threat.

“We should be the first to be notified. Those are our children and we deserve to know the danger they are in and have it be our choice to send them to school. We didn’t have a choice in this,” said Singleton.

She says parents never got a phone call or notification of any kind, learning of the threat during the evening news on Friday.

Police tell us the threat came to light on the 15th, leading to the arrest of Hernandez on the 20th. However, it wasn’t until the 23rd right before 5 p.m. on Friday that police alerted the public of the potential threat and subsequent arrest.

“They should’ve had a news briefing as soon as they found out so parents would have known,” she said.

After police released information on the threat and the arrest of Hernandez, the Superintendent of East High School did post a letter to parents, stating safety to staff and students is a top priority.

Hernandez is currently being detained by ICE, and is scheduled to be back in court on Monday Morning

WHECTV

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