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Mount Pleasant Police Department

After trespassing on the Carolina Park Academy campus Wednesday, an Awendaw man told a school employee he "just might" carry out a shooting, Mount Pleasant police said.

Around 4 p.m., the man was spotted on school grounds and subsequently told he was on private property, said Inspector Chip Googe, an agency spokesman.

"It's not like I'm gonna shoot a bunch of kids," the man replied, according to the incident report, but followed with "I just might."

The man was arrested and charged with disturbing schools, a misdemeanor offense that — for non-students — carries with it up to one year behind bars and a fine of up to $2,000.

Additionally, the man was put on trespass notice for all Charleston County schools and town of Mount Pleasant facilities, according to an incident report.

The disturbing schools law, which has been on the books for about a century, was revised last year to clarify that the law applies to students who specifically threaten to kill or seriously injure another individual.

Before that, the law was long criticized for being overly broad. 

For students guilty of the offense, there is no clear punishment and instead relies on the state's Commission on Prosecution, an agency that backs South Carolina prosecutors. 

Last month in Columbia, a former Cardinal Newman student, 16, was arrested for threatening to shoot up his school. While that short video was made May 21 and sent to 13 other teens through a group text, it wasn’t discovered until after the juvenile made two other videos July 13 that a parent saw and then alerted authorities.

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Reach Michael Majchrowicz at 843-937-5591. Follow him on Twitter @mjmajchrowicz.

Michael Majchrowicz is a reporter covering crime and public safety. He previously wrote about courts for the Daily Hampshire Gazette in Northampton, Massachusetts. A Hoosier native, he graduated from Indiana University with a degree in journalism.

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