A Florida man was arrested last Friday after allegedly drawing a violent picture on his stepchild’s homework assignment.
Thirty-three-year-old Robert Paul Alexander Edwards, was charged with a written threat to kill or do bodily injury, according to the Gulf County Sheriff’s Department.
Edwards’ stepchild attends Port St. Joe Elementary School near Mexico Beach, Florida. The child turned in a homework assignment last Friday with a violent drawing on the bottom which appears to depict a school building on fire. One person is running from the burning building and a gunman seems to be shooting at several people standing in line.
Other features of the drawing include two stick-figure bodies on the ground in what appear to be minimalistic pools of cartoon blood–everything is drawn in blue ink. The words “Pew, Pew, Pew” are scribbled near the stick figure holding what appears to be a cartoon gun.
According to local media, the drawing was immediately reported to school and district administrative staff who later notified law enforcement. Superintendent of Schools Jim Norton said:
As always, student safety continues to be of the utmost importance. This action was perceived as a potential threat and immediate action was the only recourse. These matters will never be taken lightly and they may not be simply considered erring on the side of caution.
An investigation by the Gulf County Sheriff’s Office laid the blame for the drawing on Edwards, who was then taken into custody and interviewed before being charged.
Sheriff Mike Harrison released a statement which read, in part, “Our country has been affected one too many times with horrific school tragedies. We take matters like this very seriously.”
Despite charging Edwards with the threat citation, Harrison said he doesn’t believe Edwards made the threat in earnest.
The violent threat charge is a second-degree felony in Florida. Edwards is currently jailed on a $150,000 bond.
[images via Gulf County Sheriff’s Office]