BOONE COUNTY, Ind. — Kenneth Getch is in the Boone County Jail without bond for a threat he called a joke, according to court documents.
Getch was arrested Friday afternoon shortly after he was charged with Felony 6 intimidation for a snapchat threat. According to a probable cause affidavit, Getch took a picture of himself smiling with his finger on the trigger of a handgun.
The message on the snapchat was a threat toward Western Boone Schools. According to court docs it said, “best investment I’ve made so far boutta make these webo mf regret even saying my name.” WeBo refers to Western Boone.
”I don’t know how that could be a joke,” said Rachel Burnell, a mother of Western Boone Community School Corporation students.
According to court docs, Getch admitted to taking the picture on Saturday, Oct. 15. By the next day, the photo was already being seen by school staff, the Boone County Sheriff’s Office and others on social media.
”We will not tolerate any type of behavior like this toward anyone, especially the schools and the students,” said Wesley Garst, the Public Information Officer for the Boone County Sheriff’s Office.
Garst said an investigation began as soon as they heard.
According to court documents, Getch came up to a Lebanon Police Officer in a Subway and confessed to taking the picture on Sunday, Oct. 16. He said the gun was not real and he had only sent it to a few friends.
According to court documents, Getch said, “he now understands how stupid it was and wanted law enforcement to know that he was not threatening Webo or anyone directly.”
Getch said he had made the picture as a joke for the Lebanon High School and Western Boone rivalry week. The two schools had faced off in football the day before the picture was taken.
”We found there were some words exchange at the Lebanon High School football game,” Garst said.
Police also interviewed Getch’s mother who said the family did not have any firearms and she did not believe Getch did either.
Getch was suspended from Lebanon High School for a week and given a trespass warning for Western Boone Schools.
”That is more just a warning that we give that person saying, ‘You’re not allowed on this property, if you do come on this property you will be charged,’” said Garst.
Western Boone has been on fall break this week, but extra deputies were still on school property just in case.
Parents feared that was not enough, though.
”Now there are so many more school shootings going on and it’s taken like a slap on the wrist,” Burnell said.
But Garst said the sheriff’s office was still in the process of investigating.
”We have a job to do and investigate everything thoroughly, not only from a victim’s side of things but also a suspect’s side of things,” Garst said.
Garst said the Boone County Sheriff’s Office conducted search warrants and interviewed Getch. This ultimately led to a probable cause affidavit being presented to the Boone County Prosecutor and the charge being filed.
Burnell said she does feel more comfortable.
”Clearly there is a consequence going on now versus before not knowing anything or what would possibly happen,” she said.
Even with the threat determined not credible and Getch in jail, Garst said the sheriff’s office will still have additional deputies at Western Boone schools when students and staff return from fall break Monday.