DUNMORE, LACKAWANNA COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) — The talk of the town in Dunmore and making national headlines was the arrest of four Dunmore High School students accused of plotting a mass-murder attack on their school.
Word of that alleged plot was made public on Friday and that two of the accused teens are charged as adults.
Emotions in the Dunmore community are running high. Many of the parents Eyewitness News spoke with about the incident declined to comment on camera but had plenty to say off-camera.
Unbelievable. That’s how many people in Dunmore describe the details surrounding the foiled plot of an attack on Dunmore High School.
Investigators say Alyssa Kucharski and Zavier Lewis, both 15 years old, planned to carry out a mass-casualty attack on April 20th, 2024, the 25th anniversary of the Columbine massacre.
“For my daughter’s safety, my safety, my wife’s safety my mother-in-law who is currently living with us, it was definitely kinda shocking,” explained Mike Paranich, Kucharski’s neighbor.
Paranich lives next door to Kucharski’s home on Clay Avenue, where police discovered a completed molotov cocktail and bomb-making materials.
“It’s scary. It really is scary because I know kids, people that have kids in the school and I never thought you’d see that here,” said Marty Coar, Owner of Two Brothers Restaurant & Pizzeria.
According to court papers, Kucharski told police she and Lewis wanted to re-create Columbine and surpass more casualties.
It’s what everybody was talking about Saturday night at Marty Coar’s restaurant on East Drinker Street.
“They’re all afraid but happy that they caught them and they’re worried about that hit list,” said Coar.
Investigators say the teens chose specific victims including the principal, the school resource officer and a teacher as well as classmates.
Lackawanna County District Attorney Mark Powell assured parents they do not believe there is any active threat to students or staff.
“This was shocking, to say the least. But I mean I’m glad everything is safe now and no one got hurt,” said Paranich.
Numerous attempts to reach officials at Dunmore High School were unsuccessful. Kucharski and Lewis were arraigned by video conference on Friday.
They are charged with possessing weapons of mass destruction, terroristic threats and related counts. Both teens are being held without bail until they complete court-ordered evaluations.
Kucharski and Lewis are scheduled for preliminary hearings on October 4th.