"In February, Justin, then 18, and a friend were arguing on Facebook with someone else over the online video game "League of Legends."
"Someone had said something to the effect of 'Oh you're insane. You're crazy. You're messed up in the head,'" Jack Carter told CNN affiliate KVUE in Austin. "To which he replied 'Oh yeah, I'm real messed up in the head. I'm going to go shoot up a school full of kids and eat their still-beating hearts.'"
According to court documents, Justin wrote "I'm f---ed in the head alright. I think I'ma (sic) shoot up a kindergarten and watch the blood of the innocent rain down and eat the beating heart of one of them."
Jack Carter said his son followed the claim with "LOL" and "J/K" -- indicating that the comment wasn't serious.
But someone else -- Carter says a woman in Canada -- noticed the comment and reported it to authorities. Coming two months after the deadly shootings at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, the report wasn't taken lightly. According to court documents, Carter lived less than a half-mile from an elementary school in New Braunfels, Texas.
A search warrant was issued on February 13 and, a week later, a judge issued a warrant for his arrest.
"I thought it was a joke," Jack Carter told CNN. "I couldn't believe the person that called me. I kept telling them they have to be kidding. When I realized he wasn't, I literally broke down crying."
A judge set bond for Justin Carter at $500,000, meaning that 10% of that, or $50,000, would have to be posted to get him out of jail while he awaits trial. His lawyer, Donald H. Flanary III, says that's far more than his family can afford.
"It's outrageous," Flanary, who is working the case for free, told CNN Tuesday. "I've represented murderers and their bond was $150,000.""
Justin Carter is a kid who made an ill-advised sarcastic Facebook comment. The search warrant did not turn up any weapons or any evidence that suggests that Justin's comment was serious. Now after being beaten and placed in solitary confinement for his own protection, Justin is severely depressed and is on suicide watch. We can't determine the outcome of Justin's trial or change the law that led to his arrest, but we can ensure that he awaits trial at home and in safety by bailing him out of jail.
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