Kindergartner allegedly inspired by horror film brings knife to school, investigators say

The Sumter County Sheriff's Office says a 7-year-old student brought a knife to school. When...
The Sumter County Sheriff's Office says a 7-year-old student brought a knife to school. When asked why, the student allegedly threatened their fellow classmates and teacher.(Sumter Counter Sheriff's Office)
Published: Feb. 26, 2023 at 10:46 PM CST
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SUMTER COUNTY, S.C. (WIS/Gray News) - Authorities in South Carolina say the “Chucky” horror film franchise allegedly inspired a 7-year-old student to bring a knife to school to threaten others.

The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office says a 7-year-old kindergartner brought a knife Wednesday to Cherryvale Elementary in their backpack. The knife was a 12-inch stainless steel kitchen knife with a 7-inch blade, WIS reports.

The sheriff’s office said a teacher noticed the knife in the student’s backpack when they opened it. The principal was notified and the blade confiscated.

Investigators said the student did not brandish the knife.

During a conversation with the principal and the school resource officer, the student allegedly said they intended to stab teachers and students in the heart to kill them. The sheriff’s office said Friday the student also said they intended to stab a student that had been “picking” on them.

The student allegedly told school administrators they knew how to stab their classmates and teachers by watching the movie “Chucky.”

Investigators say the student’s age prevents criminal charges. A child may not be detained by law enforcement before the age of 11 without a family court order.

The sheriff’s office said they have not been made aware of any previous warning signs from staff or faculty that would’ve promoted preventative measures. Further student disciplinary measures will be addressed by the Sumter School District.

An additional investigation is underway to learn how the child gained access to the knife and if any negligence was involved on the part of the parent(s) or guardian(s). The sheriff’s office says if negligence is determined, additional charges may be applied.

The incident is also being referred to the Department of Social Services for additional followup with the child and family.

“We will do everything within our power to protect our children from harm. At the same time, we support school and DSS officials as they work to balance discipline and compassion with all children,” Sheriff Anthony Dennis said.