August 28, 2020
By: Staff Report
BRANDON, Fla. – The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Brandon man for making an online threat against a private school in Seffner.
On Thursday, August 27, deputies were made aware of a comment written by Zachary Brines, 31, on a Facebook page for former students of Seffner Christian Academy. Brines, who is an alumnus of the school, commented on a posted that he would “Go to school packing heat and just open fire on all my enemies. Mostly the school teachers and front office administration.” Out of concern, another user took a screenshot of the post, which Brines later deleted, and reached out to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
Deputies responded to Brines’ home in Brandon the same night. Brines was questioned about the post but refused to talk without an attorney. Brines was arrested and charged with written threat to conduct a mass shooting or act of terrorism. He was also Baker Acted. No firearms were located within Brines’ residence.
“We take the safety and security of our Hillsborough County schools very seriously. Whenever a threat is made against a school, its students or staff, we have to assume it is credible,” said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “As students across Hillsborough County head back to school this month, hopefully, this incident will serve as a reminder that making threats online to harm others is unacceptable, and regardless of your age, you will face the consequences for your actions.”
Ahead of the first day of in-person classes on Monday, August 31, Sheriff Chronister is encouraging parents to talk to their students about the dangers of making school threats. A PSA on this subject has been shared on the HCSO Sheriff YouTube channel. A link is included below.