With the rash of school shootings that the country has been dealing with, it's a relief to be able to tell the story of how a potential one was stopped… by New England Patriots wide receiver Julian Edelman.
The NYTimes is reporting that Edelman was on vacation in Texas when he received a direct message on his Instagram account telling him "there is a kid in your comment section says he s going to shoot up a school, i think you should alert the authority." This was just five weeks after the shooting in Parkland, FL, so Edelman took the notification very seriously and contacted his assistant in Boston, Shannon Moen, who scanned through the hundreds of posts in response to Edelman's recent messages. She found the one in question: "I'm going to shoot my school up watch the news."
As the report states, Moen called 911, who sent out a member of the Boston Police Department. She saw the messages and immediately notified her chief. Detectives were assigned to the case and an emergency records request was made, which allowed them to track the IP address to Port Huron, Michigan. Local authorities in Michigan were notified and two officers were sent out to the home where they found the alleged source of the message: a 14-year old boy who had access to two rifles owned by his mother.
The boy was arrested and taken to a juvenile detention center where he remains. He is being charged with making a false report of a threat of terrorism — a felony that could get him up to four years in jail. The case has been turned over to the local district attorney.
Edelman has tried reaching out to the person who originally notified him, but with no response as of yet. Edelman told the Times:
"Thankfully, this kid said something. We're going to send him something, a care package, just for his work. He's the real hero."