Schoolgirls in ‘satanic murder plot’
A POLICE officer has said he was "shaken to his core" when he was notified about two young school girls aged 11 and 12 who plotted to kill 15 of their classmates.
The girls from Bartow Middle School in central Florida brought knives to their school in a foiled plot to kill classmates, cut them up and drink their blood before killing themselves, police officials said on Wednesday.
However, they were caught before the horrific scene was to unfold and according to arrest affidavits released by the Bartow Police Department no students or staff were harmed.
In a Facebook post shared by the Bartow police, its chief officer Joe Hall assured the school community they were doing everything to keep their children safe.
"I understand that the recent news of a plot to kill students at Bartow Middle School is troubling. In fact, it shook me to my core when I was notified of it," Mr Hall said.
"However, I want to make it clear that your children are our most precious citizens here in the City and we do everything we can, every single day to make sure our children are safe.
"I am very proud of the staff at Bartow Middle School and my staff at the Police Department for thwarting this plot from becoming a tragedy."
AP reported that according to the police affidavit the girls planned to stake out at a school bathroom and wait for smaller students to enter where they had planned to cut their victims' throats, cut up their bodies, eat the flesh and drink their victims' blood.
The students then planned to take their own lives, police said.
Mr Hall told CNN that the girls wanted to kill at least 15 people and were waiting in the bathroom for the opportunity to find smaller kids they could overpower to be their victims.
The plot was foiled only after one of the girls' mothers called in when a robotic call said she had skipped school, CNN reported.
"This is horrific and if I had children in school I'd be scared, slapped to death," Mr Hall said.
Officers found the girls in the bathroom with a goblet to allegedly drink their victims' blood, four knives, a pizza cutter and a knife sharpener.
Detectives said the girls who were "satan worshippers" devised the plot while watching "scary" movies at one of their houses over the weekend.
"Killing all of these students was in hopes it would make them worse sinners ensuring that after they committed suicide … (they) would go to hell so they could be with satan," the affidavit said.
Officials with Polk County Schools said that extra police officers and guidance counsellors would be at the school this week.
"There are several measures in place to make sure our children are safe and that all threats of violence are addressed," Mr Hall said. "In this isolated incident, these protocols worked. I believe in these protocols and we will continue to follow them."
The girls face charges of conspiracy to commit first-degree murder and possession of a weapon at school, among other charges.
AP reported it will be up to prosecutors to decide whether the girls will be charged formally as juveniles or adults.
After their arrest, the girls were sent to a juvenile detention facility. Bartow is located in the heart of Florida's citrus belt.
If you or someone you know is in need of crisis or suicide prevention support, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or visit www.lifeline.org.au/gethelp