VANCOUVER – The boy accused of bringing knives, a gun and hundreds of rounds to a Vancouver middle school Wednesday will find out Tuesday if he will remain in police custody.
The Frontier Middle School student said he brought the weapons to school because he wanted to hurt someone who was bullying his friend, according to court documents. The boy told investigators a voice in his head told him it was a good idea.
At the 11-year-old boy’s Friday court appearance, the judge looked at a mental competency evaluation to help determine if the child should be released or stay in custody.
The boy presents a low risk to the community, but has severe mental issues that need to be further discussed, said Dr. Shirley Shen, a clinical psychologist with the Clark County Juvenile Court.
She said one possible concern was that the boy had a history of leaving the house at night and "wandering the streets."
The boy's attorney recommended he be released and kept on house arrest, and that his parents install an alarm on the house to alert them if he tries to leave.
Prosecutors argued that the incident at the school proves the boy presents a high risk to the community. They recommended he remain in custody.
The court held the decision over until his next court appearance, scheduled for Tuesday morning. He will remain in custody until then.
Meanwhile the school resource officer at Frontier told KGW he wants parents to know their schools are safe.
“I feel like our schools are safe,” said resource officer Eric McCaleb, who was at Frontier when the boy was arrested. “Staff knows what to do. They knew what to do Wednesday. They did everything right.”
“It's sad that someone that young can have problems,” he added.
He also offered tips for parents. He urged parents to take an active role in the child’s life and talk with about safety or bullying concerns he or she might have. McCaleb said parents should look for warning signs, like if your child is unnecessarily aggressive.
The boy’s mother called police Wednesday when she noticed some knives were missing from her house. McCaleb said that phone call helped stop the incident at Frontier from becoming much worse.
The boy has been expelled from the school.
KGW reporter Mike Benner contributed to this report.