Utah teen accused of firing at school ceiling pleads guilty

FARMINGTON, Utah (AP) — A Utah teenager accused of firing a shotgun into the ceiling of a junior high classroom before being disarmed by his parents agreed to a plea deal with prosecutors Monday.

The 15-year-old boy pleaded guilty to two felony charges: theft of a firearm and shooting toward a building, the Standard-Examiner in Ogden reports (http://bit.ly/2lJ1ZJi). He had been charged in juvenile court with five felony and misdemeanor counts.

The Associated Press is not naming the teenager because of his age. Defense attorney Lindsay Jarvis said Monday her client got the weapon on Nov. 30, the day before he brought it to school. The teen's parents attended the hearing, holding hands and whispering to each other at times.

The defendant is set to be sentenced on Feb. 23.

Bountiful police said the teenager walked into a science classroom and fired into the ceiling on Dec. 1, leaving a hole the size of a small dinner plate, before his parents caught up him with him and disarmed him. No one was hurt.

The parents had become concerned after talking to him that morning, and they followed him to school when they discovered a shotgun and handgun missing from their home, police said. Investigators said he walked to school with the weapons hidden under a long coat, and he carried two boxes of ammunition.

He didn't say a word as a teacher and one of 26 students tried to talk him out of firing again, police said.

The shots were fired at Mueller Park Junior High School in Bountiful, about 11 miles north of Salt Lake City.

The boy had previously been charged with two felony counts of theft of a firearm; one felony count of discharge of a firearm; and two misdemeanor counts of possession of a short-barreled shotgun on school premises.

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Information from: Standard-Examiner, http://www.standard.net