(IRVING, Texas) — Police in Irving, Texas, have cleared a Texas teen after an investigation showed that the teen’s homemade device was not a bomb.
Ahmed Mohamed, a high school freshman at MacArthur High School in Irving, was taken into police custody Monday when his homemade digital clock was mistaken for a bomb by school officials and the police.
Irving Police Chief Larry Boyd told reporters at a news conference Wednesday that no charges will be brought against Mohamed for bringing a “suspicious device” to school.
Boyd said officers were quickly able to determine that the device was not a bomb, and that their subsequent investigation was aimed at determining whether Mohamed made a “naive mistake.” Boyd said the investigation found no evidence to support charges that there was “intention to create alarm” so no charges will be filed.
Boyd defended the actions of the police and school officials, saying that officials had to take a suspicious device seriously in order to protect students after recent school attacks. When asked if the situation would have been handled differently if the student had been white, Boyd said, “Our reaction would have been the same either way.”
Mohamed’s recent brush with the law has attracted the attention of a presidential candidate and a celebrity. Hillary Clinton and Russell Simmons expressed their support for Mohamed on Twitter.
Mohamed, who studies engineering and has won awards for his inventions, told ABC News’ Dallas station, WFAA-TV, that he created the clock over the weekend and brought it to school to show a teacher.
Mohamed was tinkering with the clock during class and plugged it into an electrical outlet when it began making noise, according to the police.
Mohamed said he was then pulled out of class by the principal and school resource officer and questioned about the device. Police later confiscated the clock along with Mohamed’s tablet computer, according to WFAA.
In addition to calling police, Mohamed told WFAA that the school principal suspended him for three days.
Irving Independent School District released the following statement to ABC News:
“Around 3 p.m. yesterday, a MacArthur High School student was arrested on campus by the Irving Police Department. School officials have been cooperating fully with the police investigation, and while privacy laws prevent us from sharing specific details about student discipline, we can assure everyone that school administrators are handling the situation in accordance with the Irving ISD Student Code of Conduct and applicable laws. We always ask our students and staff to immediately report if they observe any suspicious items and/or suspicious behavior. If something is out of the ordinary, the information should be reported immediately to a school administrator and/or the police so it can be addressed right away. We will always take necessary precautions to protect our students and keep our school community as safe as possible.”
ABC News has reached out to Mohamed’s parents and is waiting for comment.
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