DUNMORE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — Two High School sophomores are charged as adults after planning a Columbine-style attack on their High School.
Officials say the 15-year-old students were plotting to commit a mass murder here at Dunmore High School. The foiled plot is sending shockwaves through the Lackawanna County community.
“I was like, no, this can’t be real,” said Lori Albano, a grandparent of a Dunmore High School student.
At Dunmore High School’s Friday night football game, Lori Albano recalls the moment she heard about the arrests of four Dunmore High School students.
Police say the four conspired to carry out an attack on the school on April 20, 2024, the 25th anniversary of the Columbine massacre.
“It always seems like maybe somebody else but not in your own backyard. We could walk to the high school. So it does hit hard,” explained Albano.
According to District Attorney Mark Powell, Zavier Lewis and Alyssa Kucharski, both 15-years-old, are being charged as adults due to the serious nature of the threats. Two other students are being charged as juveniles for their involvement.
“It’s quite frightening. So, we do want to assure the residents of Dunmore, the students at Dunmore High School, that there is no immediate threat of harm,” stated District Attorney Powell.
Court documents reveal text messages were uncovered between the students discussing plans to “shoot up the school” and kill three staff members among others. Another student calling “dibs” on a specific victim.
“It’s just beyond belief, it’s a very scary thing,” said Albano.
Investigators say the students were going to name the event “Natural Born Killers.” A search warrant was executed at Kucharski’s home where police say they recovered bomb-making materials and a completed molotov cocktail under her porch. Kucharski’s mother told police her daughter was “obsessed with” the Columbine massacre.
Lewis and Kucharski are locked up in a juvenile detention center awaiting their preliminary hearing on October 4.