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UK Man in Jail for Threatening School Shooting on Facebook

A UK man has been sentenced to more than two years in prison for posting offensive and threatening messages on Facebook. The BBC reports that 24-year-old Reece Elliott made threats on the memorial pages for two teenage students.

Elliot apparently used a fake name to post threatening messages on the 'RIP Caitlin Talley' page and detailed plans to kill at least 200 people at a shooting at Warren County High School in Tennessee. The messages were taken seriously by those reading the page and, according to the BBC, 3,000 kids were kept home from school the following day. When the FBI realized the communications were sent from the UK, they contacted the Metropolitan Police Service in the UK.

Elliot handed himself in to local police who established that he had no intention of carrying out the shooting. He admitted to one count of making a threat to kill and eight counts of sending grossly offensive messages. He was sentenced to more than two years in jail this past April.

  • RaceGamePlayerX
    Good for the UK! That guy should have been locked up, and they did the right thing.
    One question though.... what's this doing on a tech site?
    Reply
  • cats_Paw
    SO basicly, if you use facebook, the FBI knows everything. Nice, it dosent even seem like they try to hide it anymore.
    Reply
  • kinggremlin
    Certainly cats__Paw. The likely the scenario here is that the FBI was monitoring this facebook page, not that someone associated with a school of 3000 kids saw the posts and contacted the local authorities.
    Reply
  • bunz_of_steel
    Sad to hear folks making statements like that to our future generation. Not sure how the FBI heard about it but guessing this kinda stuff is reported on a blotter somewhere that is up channeled. Or local authorities/citizen reported it and thus making it a federal offense? Either way good to have the FBI & Metropolitan Police Service taking positive reaction.
    Reply
  • PedanticNo1
    What's more disturbing than the arrest itself, is the citizens' support of it, as witness the comments above mine.
    Reply
  • buzzrattie
    What ever happened to free speech or the Bill of Rights, I don't condone what this person has done, but when people type something on a blog or facebook message, its called free speech. If he had acted on his words, then that is something entirely different.
    Reply
  • Mousemonkey
    11130637 said:
    What ever happened to free speech or the Bill of Rights, I don't condone what this person has done, but when people type something on a blog or facebook message, its called free speech. If he had acted on his words, then that is something entirely different.

    Not if it breaks the ToS of the website or blog site and certainly not if it breaks the law of the land. You might want to check out the legals of that before you reply.
    Reply
  • SirGCal
    This proves two things:

    1) Nothing on Facebook is private. If you even think it is, you're an idiot. They will find out, track it, etc. That's why I got off Facebook when they changed their privacy policy a few years back. Don't need it. And yes, the FBI, etc. has sniffers to find this type of stuff specifically. This, political threats, national threats, etc. And not just on Facebook...
    2) Some idiots really deserve to get busted. Seriously?!? Let's just threaten a bunch of kids. In what universe is that ever cool?!? Ever?!? Anywhere?!? You double-dumb-@$#... Sit and rot... Turning yourself in should just possibly prevent the needle, but you should still sit for more then 2 years IMHO.
    Reply
  • SirGCal
    11130783 said:
    11130637 said:
    What ever happened to free speech or the Bill of Rights, I don't condone what this person has done, but when people type something on a blog or facebook message, its called free speech. If he had acted on his words, then that is something entirely different.

    Not if it breaks the ToS of the website or blog site and certainly not if it breaks the law of the land. You might want to check out the legals of that before you reply.

    And not only that; but the UK doesn't have a bill of rights or a constitution as the US does that I am aware of; so that's about the dumbest argument I've ever heard TBH...
    Reply
  • PedanticNo1
    The legality isn't in question, what he did was illegal. But does anyone honestly believe he was planning to do it? He was trolling. This happens all the time; people capitalize on the tragedy of others to get a laugh.

    Being robotic about the law and interpreting by the letter is irrational. There are extenuating circumstances that no written law could ever hope to cover for any given situation. So yeah, the kid is an idiot, but he doesn't deserve two years in prison for being an idiot. That will probably make him into a criminal, if not embitter him. Kneejerk reactions ftw I guess.
    Reply