Aw, hell. Is this another Clock Kid? In Texas, a 12-year-old Indian American middle school student spent three days in a juvenile detention center after a bully allegedly told teachers he had a bomb hidden in his backpack.
Arlington police say boy made hoax bomb threat; family blames classmate's prank
Armaan Singh Sarai, a seventh grader at Nichols Junior High School in Arlington, was arrested last Friday on a charge of making a terroristic threat after a classmate reported he had threatened to blow up the school.
Arlington police say Armaan admitted that he had mentioned a bomb and insisted he was only joking, but making a terror threat, even in jest, warranted taking him into custody.
But Armaan's family says it's the classmate who was behind the prank that got Armaan handcuffed, detained and suspended from school.
The trouble began last Thursday, Dec. 10. Singh had just finished a history test when he opened his backpack to put away his things. Singh's backpack is a "power bag," he told the Morning News, which means it has a battery at the front to charge a cell phone.
"The student in front of me, who is the one who made the accusation... said that [the backpack] looked like a bomb," Singh said. "Then Friday... I came back to that period and he was in front of me again and he said ‘I'm going to go tell on you. I'm going to go tell on you and say all this stuff about you. I'm going to go tell on you.'
Singh said he laughed at the other student, who did the same. But the other student — who Singh's cousin Haer called "a bully" - reported the incident to their teacher.
"The police came in and they grabbed me and they just took me outside in the hallway, made me wait, and then our class was getting out, then they took me to the police officer's office," he told the Morning News. "Then they talked to me and asked me questions. Then they took me to the department of the police, then the juvenile center.
On top of all that, Armaan's family says that they were never notified that he was taken into custody. They didn't get a call from the school, the cops, nobody. Nobody bothered to tell this kid's parents. They eventually had to call 911 to find out where he was being held.
Armaan's cousin, Ginee Haer, detailed her family's account of the incident in a Facebook post that quickly went viral this week:
It sounds to me like school kids acting like fools, as school kids often do. Clearly, when everyone is jumpy about terrorism, it's unwise and irresponsible for anyone to joke about bombs in backpacks. But it seems wholly unfair in this situation that everyone, from the school administrators to police, zeroed in on the brown kid.
More here: Another 'Clock kid'? Family outraged as 12-year-old Sikh boy arrested over alleged bomb threat at Tex. school