Education

Exchange Student Charged After Threatening To ‘Shoot Up’ Catholic School

An exchange student from Taiwan in possession of a handmade firearm and 1,600 rounds of ammunition was arrested last week after threatening to “shoot up” a Catholic high school in Pennsylvania, New York Daily News reports.

Eighteen-year-old An Tso Sun, who has only been in the United States since August, allegedly told another 17-year-old student that he planned to “shoot up” Bonner and Prendergast Catholic High School on May 1. The other student reported Sun, prompting police to search his home for evidence of terrorism.

Sun’s host mother, a lawyer whose name has not been revealed, stashed the exchange student’s loaded ammunition and a handgun into a duffle bag and hid it with someone else after receiving a phone call from Bonner and Prendergast School before authorities arrived.

On Monday, investigators found the duffle bag, which held more than 660 rounds for a handmade 9mm Glock handgun, 225 rounds for a 12-gauge weapon, 295 rounds for an AR-15, and 425 for an AK-47. Investigators also discovered a high-powered crossbow and military vest in the teenager’s home. Sun’s host mother has not been charged with any accusations as of Tuesday.

According to police, Sun was able to purchase parts for the handgun online and build the firearm himself.

Police Superintendent Michael Chitwood told reporters that this ongoing investigation of a “kid that’s not even an American citizen,” in possession of so many rounds and an illegal firearm, is “mind-boggling.” He expressed concern that there may be more to the story: “Is there something more to it than what we have? Are there other people involved other than him?”

Sun’s attorney released a statement Monday that reads, “[Sun’s] parents have flown in from Taiwan and fully support their child. Our investigation reveals that there was no intention to terrorize or otherwise commit any criminal act.”

Chitwood, however, told reporters, “Based on the totality of everything, we believe he was going to shoot up the school.”