Everett teen accused of plotting mass shooting at high school pleads guilty

Everett teen accused of plotting mass shooting at high school pleads guilty (PHOTO: KOMO News)

The Everett teen — who described his plans to shoot up a high school in his diary — was back in court today to change his plea to guilty. That teen’s grandmother turned him in and he was arrested the day before the Parkland shooting.

For 10 months now, Joshua O’Connor has been held behind bars and his bail has been set at$5 million dollars. The 18-year-old was back in front of a judge again, shackled and in prisoner attire. This time, it was to reverse his plea from not guilty to guilty of three charges. The charges include: first-degree attempted murder, first-degree robbery with a firearm and possession of explosive device.

Police say his grandmother alerted authorities when she found O’Connor's journal filled with chilling details about a plot to carry out a mass shooting at Aces Alternative High School.

In the call she made to authorities in February: "I'm finding journal entries from my grandson. He's planning to have a mass shooting at one of the high schools."

When police secured a search warrant for the home he shared with his grandma, they found his journal, an AK-47 and grenades.

Police believe O’Connor used the rifle to rob a gas station convenience store and steal $100 dollars from the register.

KOMO News heard from the prosecutor Thursday about the plea change.

“We did believe it was important for Mr. O’Connor to take responsibility for what he did and to be held legally accountable for the steps he took,” said Andrew Alsdorf, Snohomish County Deputy Prosecutor.

Before the plea change, the prosecutor asked the judge to drop a weapons allegation on the first-degree attempted murder charge. That could reduce O'Connor's sentence by 5 years.

There will be no trial for O’Connor. The prosecutor says O'Connor could face up to 28 years in prison. It'll be up to a judge to decide that punishment in early February.

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