A Sun Prairie student who told a teacher he was going to “kill everybody” has pleaded guilty to making a terrorist threat.
Gabriel T. Pierre was arrested on Sept. 18, 2019, after a Sun Prairie Area School District teacher reported the 16-year old said he wanted to be a “shooter” would purchase a “32” with his next paycheck.
Pierre, now age 19, pleaded guilty to the felony charge of a terrorist threat during a Sept. 14 Dane County Circuit Court plea hearing. He was released on a signature bond following his 2019 arrest.
Pierre was referred to the Dane County Deferred Prosecution Program and if completed, the felony charge could be dismissed. Participants in the DPP agree to attend classes, make restitution, do community service work, or get counseling.
Pierre faces up to three years and nine months in prison and/or an $11,000 fine, on the felony and misdemeanor charges, if he does not complete the program.
When Pierre was contacted by the Sun Prairie Police officer Lamont Crockett following the Sept. 18, 2019 incident, he appeared annoyed that teachers reported the incident and downplayed the situation, according to the criminal complaint.
Pierre told the police officer that he didn’t like the new teacher and made the comments to make her go away. Pierre said he didn’t have plans to harm anyone but made the “shooter” comments because it was funny to shock people, the criminal complaint states.
Pierre told the teacher he loved guns and that his dad had many at home. The teen’s mother later told police that guns at the family’s home were locked in a safe.
During the investigation, Crockett, a school resource officer, reported having previous experiences with Pierre, when the teen was “emotionally and behaviorally erupting,” and would make statements that he wanted to shoot unknown people, according to the criminal complaint.
Pierre’s mother reportedly told police her son makes the empty threats to shock people. Pierre’s parents gave Sun Prairie police to search his bedroom on Sept. 20 and no firearms were found.
Pierre was a Sun Prairie High School student but was moved to the school district’s Early Learning Center at 509 Commercial Avenue for the 2019-20 school year, according to the criminal complaint. Crockett said Pierre was at the center because of behavioral issues and for the safety of other students.
Crockett said Pierre had no history of harming anyone or carrying out his threats and that a mental health evaluation wasn’t deemed necessary as it was believed that the teen made the comments for humor. Crockett testified at a preliminary hearing that the Early Learning Center wasn’t put on lockdown, and students were not dismissed after Pierre made the Sept. 18 threat.
Teachers told police that they feared for their and others’ safety after Pierre made the threats.
Crockett reported that school interventions, referrals, parental contacts, police warnings, and citations didn’t change Pierre’s behavior and that law enforcement intervention was necessary.
Pierre was referred as a juvenile to the Dane County District Attorney’s Office for disorderly conduct. Pierre was charged as an adult for making the felony terrorist threat as well as misdemeanor disorderly conduct. The misdemeanor charge against Pierre was dismissed as part of the deferred prosecution agreement.