PIQUA — Public records in the case against a Piqua man charged with making suspicious threats to “shoot up” the Piqua Junior High School indicated that he may have had a 14-year-old girlfriend at the school.
Shortly before 9 a.m. Tuesday, a coworker of William C. Ingle, 21, contacted Piqua police to report threatening statements Ingle allegedly made about “shooting up” the junior high, using explosives at the school, and referring to other school shooters as “amateurs.”
According to Miami County Municipal Court records, Ingle was overheard talking about shooting up the school because his 14-year-old girlfriend was “being bullied there.” Ingle also allegedly discussed how he would carry out a mass shooting at the school, although he told his coworker that he did not own any guns.
Piqua Chief of Police Bruce Jamison declined to comment further on the investigation on Wednesday, as other aspects of the case are still being investigated.
“There are additional elements to this that don’t have public safety implications that we’re not commenting on,” Jamison said.
According to court records, Ingle admitted to making the statements to “shoot up the school,” but stated that “he was very sorry and had no intentions of following through with this attack.” Ingle also admitted to being in a relationship with a 14-year-old girl.
Ingle was taken into custody at approximately 12:30 p.m. Tuesday, before he had an opportunity to carry out his threats. He was charged with making false alarms, a third-degree felony.
Ingle was arraigned in Miami County Municipal Court on Wednesday. He is currently being held in the Miami County Jail on $25,000 bond. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for May 30.
On Tuesday, Jamison said that Piqua City Schools were notified before Ingle was taken into custody “in case they got wind of it and were wondering if they should be locking down. We were in touch with the superintendent as the investigation progressed.”
Ultimately, the schools were asked not to lock down since other protective measures, e.g., surveillance and control of the suspect, were sufficient. “There was no reason to think the school was in any danger because we knew exactly where this guy was,” Jamison explained.
In addition, Piqua City Schools approved measures to prevent Ingle from accessing school property once he is released from jail.
“I’m pleased that our entire community takes threats like this seriously,” Jamison said on Tuesday. “We have citizens willing to say something when they hear something. Our officers are assertive in using protective measures available to us during these investigations.
Belinda M. Paschal contributed to this story.