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Boys Arrested for School Plot

April 15, 2000

SONORA, Calif. (AP) _ Two 17-year-old boys whom authorities believe were planning to storm their high school and kill students and teachers on the anniversary of the Columbine massacre were arrested Friday.

Tuolumne County Sheriff Dick Rogers said the boys planned to make their attack on Summerville High School on April 20, Adolf Hitler’s birthday and the one-year anniversary of the rampage at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colo.

Rogers said it doesn’t appear the boys, who were booked on charges of conspiracy to commit murder, were copying Columbine.

``They had been planning this for more than a year,″ he said. ``Since before Columbine.″

Searches at the boys’ homes turned up more than 40 pieces of evidence, including knives, swords and some guns.

``The weapons that were seized were quite unusual,″ Rogers said. ``They were not something you could find at the local hardware store.″

The sheriff’s department first heard about the plot last month and investigators have been gathering evidence, Rogers said.

Summerville High School’s 740 students are on spring break April 20, and for that reason authorities said they worried an attack could have come sooner.

Rogers and Tuolumne County District Attorney Tim Clancy would not say whether the teens belonged to any political organizations or hate groups.

``We do have that information, but (releasing) it could possibly jeopardize other work we have to do,″ Rogers said.

Summerville High School is located in Tuolumne City, about 85 miles east of San Francisco.

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