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Maryland teenager planned school shooting, wanted to be famous, police say

Baltimore County Police alerted FBI of Maryland teen's plan for school violence
Baltimore County Police alerted FBI of Maryland teen's plan for school violence 02:54

BALTIMORE -- A Montgomery County high school student is facing charges for allegedly planning to commit a school shooting, according to police.

Alex Ye, 18, of Rockville, was arrested following a joint investigation with the FBI Baltimore Field Office, who notified Montgomery Police of a 129-page document written by Ye.


A person who knows Ye told Baltimore County Police about the plan, according to charging documents obtained by WJZ. Baltimore County Police then contacted the FBI and police in Montgomery County.

In the document, he allegedly wrote about how he planned to commit a school shooting.  "Ye also contemplates targeting an elementary school and says that he wants to be famous," MCPD said.

According to charging documents, a witness, referred to as Witness-One, contacted Baltimore Police and said Ye sent him an Instagram message after they met at an inpatient psychiatric treatment facility in Maryland.

Ye allegedly told the witness he had finished writing a book he had been working on and wanted to share it with the witness.  According to court documents, the 18-chapter book was a fictional story about a high school shooting.

The witness said that the book suggested that the shooting was going to take place "the next day," and told police there were "striking similarities between the main character (James Wang) and Ye."

Charging documents detail starting excerpts from the book.  A quote from page three of the document read, "I have also considered shooting up my former elementary school because little kids make easier targets. And, I run the risk of getting attacked or tackled midway through with high schoolers."  

The story focused on a transgender main character who was being bullied in school and other issues that the witnesses believed were directly from Ye's life and not fictional. 

"It'd be hard to tell me apart from the hundreds of other Asian guys at my school in a police lineup. My school is mostly Asian and white. It's in upper-middle-class Rockville. It's a suburban city in Maryland where almost everyone goes to college," another excerpt read. 

Police said the witness did not finish reading the document, and contacted Baltimore County Police, warning them that a school shooting could be imminent. 

MCPD secured a search warrant and found online searches, handmade drawings depicting shooting scenes, and chat logs related to threats of mass violence. 

Ye was taken into custody and charged with threats of mass violence.  He is currently being held at the Montgomery County Central Processing Unit, where he awaits a bond hearing.

Charging documents say Ye was hospitalized in December 2022, for threatening to "shoot up a school," along with homicidal and suicidal ideations.  He was allegedly set for release in January 2023, but it was determined that he was still preoccupied with self-harm, school shootings, and explosives.

After an emergency evaluation, Ye was referred to a crisis center by a Wootton High School therapist, after Montgomery Police learned he had purchased a BB gun for the purpose of "suicide by cop."

Since the investigation, Montgomery County Police say they have increased security at schools, especially Wootton High School. 

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