Dad cries foul over 10-yr-old’s three-week detention for ‘joke’ school shooting text: ‘He’s crying all day’

A Florida father whose 10-year-old son was arrested last weekend for allegedly threatening to shoot up his school is crying foul, claiming that the authorities have overreacted to his son’s “attempt at humor.”

The boy, Daniel Marquez, was arrested and hauled off to spend 21 days in juvenile detention last weekend after he sent text messages to his friends in which he appeared to suggest he was planning a school shooting.

He specifically “shared an image of four assault rifles that he said he bought and told his buddy to ‘get ready for water day’ — referencing a recent school-sponsored event in which students participate in water activities,” according to the New York Post.

The father of Marquez’s friend saw the texts and contacted the local sheriff’s department.

When Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno learned of the texts, he immediately investigated the threat and determined that Marquez had been joking around and that the image was a stock photo that’d been pulled from the internet. Marceno nevertheless chose to arrest Marquez to teach him a lesson.

“Right now is not the time to act like a little delinquent. It’s not funny. This child made a fake threat, and now he’s experiencing real consequences,” the sheriff said in a statement.

Marquez’s father is now crying foul.

“Based on a review of what has been supplied to me, Daniel was texting a friend and they were going back and forth, a stream of texts about a variety of subjects. And within that was what I can only call an attempt at humor – but fifth-grader humor. He made an unfortunate reference to assault rifles, but only in some joking way, not related to any kind of attack on a school,” his father’s lawyer told the Daily Mail.

The lawyer, Douglas Molloy, further claimed that the part of the texts about “water day” was unrelated to the stock photo of guns.

“There was no reference tying the two things together. Somewhere in there was supposed to be something funny. He didn’t directly say he was going to shoot up a school. It is drawing a conclusion. There’s further conversation, back and forth about Water Day and the events. But nothing, absolutely nothing related to shooting it up or referencing the guns,” he said.

According to Molloy, the police showed up to Marquez’ home on the 28th and proceeded to arrest him. In response, his father contacted a lawyer, who in turn “contested the probable cause.”

But “the judge disagreed and said there was, and that Daniel had to be held for 21 days. He was taken to the juvenile detention center in Collier County because the one in Lee County is under construction. He’s still there.”

Marquez was “crying all day” after being arrested.

Comments on social media suggest that most people have little to no sympathy for the boy.

Look (*Language warning):

Molloy is now trying to secure the boy’s early release.

“I have reached out to the state attorney’s office and we will be talking about possible release. My job is to get him out and to get him his life back – to not have everyone in that 10-year-old’s life look at him differently, forever. To have people still look at him as the honor student he is – and that this was tragic collateral damage amid the cancer that pervades American society at this time,” he said to the Daily Mail.

“His dad is visiting him tonight and I will see him tomorrow. I’m moving everything from my desk for this because we all have a 10-year-old in our lives somewhere. I have a grandson and I do not wish to visit that in my brain how that might feel if he was in this situation.”


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Vivek Saxena


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