Suspects Charged For School Shooting Threat
March 16, 2018
Two suspects have been arraigned on charges for threatening to shoot a Whitmore Lake school building.
The Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s office authorized charges today against 18-year-old Eric Gordon Deaton of Whitmore Lake and 17-year-old Michael Gage Perks, also of Whitmore Lake. They are both charged with false report or threat of terrorism, a felony, punishable by up to 20 years in prison. A third subject, 17-year-old male, was released and charges were denied. A 16-year-old juvenile was released pending further investigation.
Northfield Township Police received information Tuesday afternoon from Superintendent Tom DeKeyser regarding a threat to “shoot up a school building” within the district and officers immediately began to investigate. The four suspects were taken into custody that same day and classes were canceled Wednesday as a precautionary measure. Director of Public Safety William Wagner tells WHMI a firearm was recovered during the course of the investigation and he believes the threat was credible.
Wagner says the department has worked day and night on the investigation since being notified Tuesday afternoon of the threat. Wagner said he appreciates all of the kind gestures received on behalf of the department, saying it was a true team effort of all police officers and administrative staff. He further noted the cooperation of Superintendent DeKeyser and staff. Wagner says they’re fortunate to have a close relationship with school staff, which helped bring the individuals into custody. Wagner stressed there was one true hero in all of this - the individual that had the courage to report the threat to school staff and ultimately avert a potential disaster in the small community.
Superintendent DeKeyser addresses the incident and student safety in his news and notes column. The link is provided. (JM)