Dallas police arrested a 12-year-old boy for plotting to shoot up his Oak Cliff charter school.
The arrest happened Thursday afternoon at Trinity Basin Prep School on East Eighth Street.
Police said the boy asked a fellow classmate to help him, even showing the other student a written diagram detailing how he would carry out the attack.
Administrators were alerted and the boy was taken to juvenile detention and later charged with felony exhibition of a firearm.
Although the student never had possession of a firearm, police said just threatening to use one allows them to charge him.
The boy was set for a first appearance detention hearing at juvenile court on Friday –- a proceeding that was closed to the media.
At Trinity Basin Prep on Friday, the charter school's superintendent praised the boy’s friend for coming forward and revealing the plot.
But administrators aren't spelling out much about the so-called diagram the student allegedly created.
"I don't think I should go into any details other than it was, we considered it to be a threat to the safety of our campus,” said superintendent Randy Shaffer.
FOX 4 asked attorney Russell Wilson, who is not involved with the case, for his perspective since police have made no mention of a weapon.
"You have to have the ability to actually carry out the threat before generally criminal liability should attach,” said Wilson.
Wilson says the investigative questions will likely include, are there mental health issues? Did he have access to weapons? And why was there a diagram and discussion of a plot to begin with?
"In our society, we've seen so many mass shootings, so many incidents that have occurred at universities and schools, and I think law enforcement is heightened in their sensitivity to these issues,” said Wilson. “And so it's kind of one of these situations where we'd rather be, more times, safe than sorry."
Juvenile court officials say that it is up to the judge whether the seventh grader remains in custody or he’s released, possibly released to his parents or guardian with certain conditions.
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