A 16-year-old girl has been arrested after authorities discovered her plan to kill people at a predominantly black church in Hall County.
The teen, who is white, planned to attack the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church, according to Gainesville police.
“Our investigation indicated the church was targeted by the juvenile based on the racial demographic of the church members,” police Chief Jay Parrish said Tuesday in a news release. “The church was immediately notified of the incident by Gainesville police to ensure the safety of our community and the current threat was under control.”
Students at Gainesville High School told school administrators that the girl had a notebook with “detailed plans to commit murder” at the church, Parrish said.
Administrators notified school resource officers of the plan on Friday and opened an investigation. They verified the threat and turned the investigation over to Gainesville police, who took the girl into custody, Parrish said. Her name has not been released.
The teen was charged with criminal attempt to commit murder and taken to the Gainesville Regional Youth Detention Center.
“This is an active investigation and a prime example of how strong relationships between the student body, school administration and law enforcement can intercept a potentially horrific incident,” Parrish said.
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