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An Instagram message may have helped Patriots receiver Julian Edelman stop a school shooting

Julian Edelman was tipped off by a direct message.

Police tracked the 14-year-old down following a post on Edelman's Instagram account.
Police tracked the 14-year-old down following a post on Edelman's Instagram account.
Image: SIPA USA/PA Images

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS wide receiver Julian Edelman revealed to the New York Times that he recently received a particularly alarming direct message on Instagram which may have prevented a tragedy.

The message said: “Dude, there is a kid in your comment section says he’s going to shoot up a school, I think you should alert the authority (sic).”

Edelman alerted his assistant, who went through the comments on Edleman’s Instagram feed, no small task, given that Edelman’s posts routinely receive hundreds of comments, and did indeed find that one person had posted: “I’m going to shoot up a school watch the news.”

Edelman’s assistant, Shannen Moen, contacted the police, who were eventually able to trace the comment to an IP address in Port Huron, Michigan. The police in Michigan were alerted, and they went to the house where the post originated.

There they found a 14-year-old boy who, the Times says, admitted to the threat, and they have taken him into custody and charged him with making a false report of a threat of terrorism. He remains in juvenile detention.

It’s unclear whether or not the boy meant to follow up on his threat, but the Times reports that police found rifles belonging to the boy’s mother at the house.

“When I told Julian, he was in shock,” Moen said of the incident. “We’re very lucky the Boston cops were all over it, very lucky the Michigan cops were all over it.”

Moen also said that Edelman wanted to thank whoever initially sent him the direct message, but that she has not yet heard back from him after reaching out.

- Brandon Wiggins, Business Insider

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