New Egypt High Schooler now charged with terrorism for shooting threat
The New Egypt High School student who allegedly threatened to shoot students and staff at their commencement ceremony has another charge added to the offenses he's facing following his arrest.
Ocean County Prosecutor Joe Coronato added the charge of Terrorism against Matthew Vanderbeek, 19, of Creme Ridge, after receiving written authorization from NJ Attorney General Gurbir Grewal.
Terrorism is a first degree offense punishable by 30 years to life in prison.
Upon his June 19 arrest Vanderbeek was charge with 3rddegree Terroristic Threats with a Threat to Kill and 2nddegree Attempting to Possess a Firearm for an Unlawful Purpose.
Ocean County Prosecutor’s Major Crimes Unit Detective Brant Uricks joined with Plumsted Township Police Detective Anthony Ringle to investigate an alleged threat made by a NEHS student (Vanderbeek) to shoot students and staff at the school’s graduation ceremony.
It didn't take investigators long to identify Vanderbeek as the suspect who allegedly used social media for evil and post his intention to shoot students and staff.
A search warrant was approved and executed by investigators that also now included the Ocean County Sheriff's Office CSI team and their K-9.
The search of Vanderbeek’s Hyacinth Court residence was to look for weapons, additional evidence of the crime and to attempt to seize any communications made via phone or computer.
The search warrant and investigation verified the threats by Vanderbeek and they also learned he was trying to obtain a firearm.
He was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Ocean County Jail where he remains incarcerated.
The public is reminded that criminal charges are merely accusations and that the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
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