Matthew Vanderbeek, a 19-year-old from Ocean County, New Jersey, has been arrested and is facing charges after he allegedly threatened to attack the New Egypt High School high school graduation ceremony.
According to The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, Vanderbeek has been charged with making terroristic threats with a threat to kill and attempting to possess a firearm for an unlawful purpose.
Authorities say that local police were alerted to a potential threat allegedly made by Vanderbeek, who allegedly said he was going to shoot students and staff at the graduation ceremony on Thursday, June 21.
Following the threat, police say that they were able to identify the suspect as Vanderbeek as he posted about his intention to shoot up the New Egypt graduation ceremony on social media.
After their investigation, a search warrant was granted for Vanderbeek’s home. Police said the search of Vanderbeek’s home included assistance from the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office’s CSI, as well as a K-9 capable of detecting the presence of firearms or ammunition.
In addition to the search warrant, police say that they discovered that Vanderbeek was attempting to obtain a gun.
“The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office wants to make it clear that there is no present threat to the Plumsted Township School system or the graduation ceremony,” a spokesperson for the Ocean County prosecutor’s office said in an official tatement.
— NEHS Warriors (@NE_HSWarriors) June 21, 2018
New Egypt High School officials said that the graduation ceremony will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 21, as scheduled, however, they said that security will be increased.
Vanderbeek was taken into custody and is being held at the Ocean County Jail.
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