ST. GEORGE (News4Utah) – The boy accused of bringing a bomb to Pine View High School in St. George appeared in court Thursday.
News4Utah was there when his parents took the stand.
The suspect’s parents shared their son was socially awkward had been bullied over the years.
“Either hitting him or calling him names. One had even said that it was too bad that he hadn’t died over the weekend,” testified the suspect’s father.
“He said you know the kids just aren’t nice, and I kind of tried to say well there’s people no matter where you go, there’s people that are going to be rude, and he finally broke down and cried and said you just don’t understand mom how bad it is,” said the suspect’s mom.
“We had a few conferences with teachers and principals … he had some incidents with other students where he had reacted to them,” said the teen’s father.
Judge Paul Dame will decide if the boy should remain in Juvenile Court or be tried as an adult.
The teen is charged with attempted murder and using a weapon of mass destruction after he allegedly brought a homemade explosive to school March 5th.
“With treatment that was carefully monitored, I would not consider this individual to be a threat,” said Expert Witness and Mental Health Counselor Shara Mitchell Ogilvie.
Mitchell Ogilvie testified she agreed with the psychologist’s findings who said the teen had Level 1 Autism.
His parents said they didn’t know their son was autistic until the assessment.
“Absolutely the most important ingredient, one of them is parent education, so meeting with the parents and helping to understand,” said Mitchell Ogilvie.
The teen is also charged with replacing an American Flag with an ISIS flag at Hurricane High School days before bringing a bomb to school.
The defense claims the boy’s intent was to scare. The State argues the teen’s intent was to kill and harm others.