Watch CBSN Live

Two arrested for alleged "Columbine threat" against Mass. high school

Natick Sands and Ryan Ringuette CBS Boston

(CBS/) ATTLEBORO, Mass. - Two former students of Attleboro High School were arrested Monday and charged with threatening the use of a dangerous weapon at the school, even though friends say the Facebook communication was clearly a joke.

CBS Boston reports that Natick Sands, 18, and Ryan Ringuette, 20, were arraigned Tuesday afternoon in Attleboro District Court and each held on $7,500 bail. Authorities said a current student alerted police to the online exchange that referred to "random mass killing sprees" and Columbine.

Police say they had no choice but to act, even though there was no imminent danger to anyone at the school.

No weapons were recovered and there's no evidence that the two were trying to acquire them.

Another student had reported seeing the following conversation on Facebook, according to CBS Boston:

    Sands: "And people wonder why I talk about random mass killing sprees all the time...FED UP."

    Ringuette: "Im with u."

    Sands: "one day man."

    Ringuette: "Columbine ove again."

    Sands: "only if I can take the first shots, you know I get **** poppin lol"

Friends of the pair say referring to the April 1999 attack at Columbine High in Colorado where two teens killed a dozen students and a teacher, was thoughtless and sick.

"It was basically just a joke gone wrong," Ryan Gomes told reporters outside court Tuesday. "It's just people expressing themselves in the wrong way. It was stupid for what they said, but it was a joke. I've known both of them for like ten years and I know none of them would ever, ever do something like this in (my) whole entire life," said Gomes

If convicted, Sands and Ringuette could both get three years in prison.

The incident happened one week after the Chardon High School shooting in Ohio that killed three students and left two others injured.

View CBS News In