None of the fifth-grade students accused of hatching an "immature and unrealistic" plot to bomb a New Jersey high school with a mint tin filled with vegetable oil, salad dressing and cinnamon sticks will face criminal charges, prosecutors said.
Clifton police said the four students, ages 10 and 11, at School No. 11 posed no threat to Clifton High School when they allegedly formulated a plan to somehow "bomb" the school during a field trip on Wednesday. The device, which contained only items commonly found in kitchens, was nonfunctional and nonflammable.
"The alleged bomb was neither flammable nor dangerous, nor did any student possess any type of lighting device. At no time were the students of School No. 11, or Clifton High School in danger," said Camelia Valdes, the Passaic County prosecutor.
Police said the students, at least two of whom were girls, made the plans after being bullied by a student at the high school.
Police initially said five students were involved and that all were arrested, but prosecutors said Friday only four students were involved and none of them was taken into custody or charged with any crimes.
The students have been required to enter an agreement with police to undergo counseling. They will also have to undergo psychiatric evaluations before returning to school.
The superintendent of schools in Clifton said that no one was in danger, but authorities said at the time that there was intent to do harm.
"The bomb squad was there, and the cars and the kids were outside, and they were crying," said student Alyson Pineiro.
A classmate at Clifton School 11, Yusuf Alnator, said Thursday, "I know the girls and they are good girls, and I don't think they would do something like that. They're on safety patrol."
At least one parent took her children out of class Thursday after learning of the alleged plot. Another said that they weren't notified until 24 hours after the incident.