Bond set for man accused of Copan school shooting threat

By: Lynn Casey

Updated:

Quick Facts:

  • Washington County Sheriff arrested a man accused of threating a violent act
  • Kyle Benefiel allegedly planned to commit a mass shooting at Copan schools on Tuesday
  • Email tipped sheriff’s office about the threat 
  • Benefiel arraigned Tuesday afternoon
  • Judge set $250,000 bond 

A Washington County judge set a bond of $250,000 for a man accused of planning a mass school shooting.

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office arrested Kyle Benefiel they said planned a mass shooting at a Copan school for Tuesday. Deputies arrested Benefiel after getting an email he sent to another party about his plan for the shooting and to commit suicide afterwards. They said Benefiel charged a deputy during his arrest and faces charges for assault on a police officer and threatening to perform a violent act. 

FOX23 Lynn Casey got ahold of the email Washington County Sheriff's said Benefiel sent.

<div id="fb-root"></div><script>(function(d, s, id) {  var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];  if (d.getElementById(id)) return;  js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;  js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3";  fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script><div class="fb-post" data-href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23lynncasey/posts/418446461686691" data-width="500"><div class="fb-xfbml-parse-ignore"><blockquote cite="https://www.facebook.com/fox23lynncasey/posts/418446461686691"><p>The judge set bond at $250,000. Benefiel&#039;s family was there and told the judge he wouldn&#039;t be capable of understanding...</p>Posted by <a href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23lynncasey/">FOX23 Lynn Casey</a> on&nbsp;<a href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23lynncasey/posts/418446461686691">Tuesday, November 24, 2015</a></blockquote></div></div>

His family attended the hearing and asked the judge to make sure Benefiel had help applying for a court appointed attorney. His grandfather mentioned Benefiel's IQ and said he can't write and isn't capable of organizing anything like that. They said he wouldn't understand what was going on. A court appointed attorney will ask for a mental health evaluation.

If he bonds out he must stay 1,000 feet from Copan schools and not possess any firearms.

FOX23 Rick Maranon first reported the threat and Benefiel's arrest on Monday.

<div id="fb-root"></div><script>(function(d, s, id) {  var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];  if (d.getElementById(id)) return;  js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;  js.src = "//connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js#xfbml=1&version=v2.3";  fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);}(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));</script><div class="fb-post" data-href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23rickmaranon/posts/1003727316351020" data-width="250"><div class="fb-xfbml-parse-ignore"><blockquote cite="https://www.facebook.com/fox23rickmaranon/posts/1003727316351020"><p>I&#039;ll have updates on the threats coming up on #FOX23 News at 9 and 10. We&#039;ll be looking into whether these threats are real, or if they are a cry for help from someone mentally ill.</p>Posted by <a href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23rickmaranon/">FOX23 Rick Maranon</a> on&nbsp;<a href="https://www.facebook.com/fox23rickmaranon/posts/1003727316351020">Monday, November 23, 2015</a></blockquote></div></div>

After his arrest Benefiel told deputies how he was going to commit the act and planned to use a relatives gun. Parents and grandparents in Copan told FOX23 they did not receive any notice about the arrest Monday.

Copan schools are not in session for Thanksgiving Break.

Investigators said they are pushing for a high bail amount and a mental evaluation for Benefiel. They said he has no connection to the school, but still chose it a random target.

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