One Washington State mother made a sacrificial choice that saved hundreds of people, most of them children. Her decision likely also saved her own life but it meant turning her son into the police.
ChurchLeaders reports, Nichole Schubert “called the police on her 17-year-old son after finding material in his room suggesting that he was planning a mass shooting at his high school in Washington State. His plan included killing her.”
It’s likely that Schubert’s actions also saved her son’s life as many of mass shootings end with the deaths of those who initiate them.
Good Morning America’s T.J. Holmes interviewed Schubert who discovered her son’s journal while cleaning his room and found it contained detailed plans for a killing spree. Schubert reportedly stated she was devastated, “saying, ‘That’s my child. I gave birth to him. It hurts a lot. It still hurts.'”
“‘Your first instinct as a parent is to protect your child,’ Schubert said. ‘But at that point, I felt like if he is actually gonna do these things, he would be safer in jail.’ She called the police within hours of reading the horrific plan.”
This horrified mom tells reporters that at that point she was thinking of others and the need to keep them safe. Her son told her if she followed through on the interview with Holmes that he wouldn’t speak to her for a very, very long time.
“‘If there’s a possibility to save even one, one person, one child, I think it’s worth it,’ the mother said, expressing that she doesn’t regret reporting her son to the police, because it saved lives.”
After every mass shooting, there is much conversation about what signs or red flags were missed. There is often speculation about what parents, teachers, neighbors, or friends might have done to stop the killing before it happened.
Nichole Schubert saw a red flag, took the terribly hard step of involving authorities, and likely averted a tragedy.
“‘Stay in their business,’ Schubert advised parents. ‘Even if they don’t like it; they’re not going to like it. But, as parents, it’s our job to know what our kids are doing. Just be aware, and watch for signs. Kids will normally tell you by their actions when something is wrong.'”
When ordinary citizens take steps to warn others of potential danger, there’s no telling what tragedies are averted, how many lives are saved.
Schubert and her son are experiencing a strained relationship but they are both still alive to get the support and counseling they need to, hopefully, overcome this challenging episode in their lives.