FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A 13-year-old girl arrested for reportedly making threats against students and staff at Renaissance Charter School last November has been cleared of the crime.
Pembroke Pines police said after further investigation, it was discovered that she, in fact, did not make the threats and that they came from a 12-year-old girl who attends the school.
After the 13-year-old’s arrest, her family refused to cooperate with investigators. The decision to arrest the student was made in consultation with the Broward State Attorney’s Office, according to police.
In December, the girl’s mother began cooperating and provided information that investigators used to look into the internet addresses associated with the threatening messages.
In January, investigators discovered that the information they uncovered no longer pointed to the teen as the one who made the threats. Instead, according to police, it implicated the 12-year-old who was one of the alleged victims.
The threats began on November 18th and on November 19th the person making the threats claimed to be at the school. In response, the Renaissance Charter School was temporarily placed on code yellow alert. The police department’s Threat Assessment Team investigated and arrested the 13-year-old who was a former student at the school.
According to investigators, the 12-year-old impersonated the other girl and used her personal information to create an email address and open multiple Instagram accounts. She then reportedly sent herself and other students multiple threatening messages. She also intentionally lied to law enforcement and school staff to frame the 13-year-old, according to police.
The girl was arrested and charged with written threats to kill or do bodily harm, filing a false police report, criminal use of personal information, and disruption of an educational institution.