Sumter child inspired by slasher film brings knife to school, says they wanted to stab classmates in heart

A 7-year-old student brought a knife to school and threatened his fellow classmates and teacher.
A 7-year-old student brought a knife to school and threatened his fellow classmates and teacher.(Sumter Counter Sheriff's Office)
Published: Feb. 23, 2023 at 12:23 PM EST
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SUMTER COUNTY, S.C. (WIS) - Investigators released new details Friday in the investigation into a seven-year-old allegedly inspired by a slasher film to bring a knife to school.

The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office said further investigation into the Wednesday incident revealed the student had the knife in their book bag and a teacher noticed it when they opened it. A school resource officer was notified and confiscated the blade.

Investigators said the student did not brandish the knife, it was during a conversation with the SRO and a principal the student said they intended to stab the teacher and students. SCSO said Friday the student also said they intended to stab a student that had been ‘picking’ on them.

SCSO shared that they have not been made aware of any previous warning signs from staff or faculty that would’ve promoted preventative measures. Investigators said the student’s age prevents criminal charges, a child may not be detained by law enforcement before the age of 11 without a Family Court Order.

Sheriff Anthony Dennis said, “We will do everything within our power to protect our children from harm. At the same time, we support school and DSS officials as they work to balance discipline and compassion with all children.”

SCSO said further student disciplinary measures will be addressed by the Sumter School District.

An additional investigation is underway to learn how the child gained access to the knife and if any negligence was involved on the part of the parent(s) or guardian(s). SCSO if negligence is determined, additional charges may be applied.

SCSO said the incident is being referred to the Department of Social Services for additional follow-up with the child and family.


Sumter law enforcement said a classic horror film series inspired a 7-year-old student to bring a knife to school and threaten others.

On Feb. 22, a Cherryvale Elementary 7-year-old kindergartener brought a knife to school in their backpack. Investigators said the student threatened his classmates and the teacher.

The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office said the knife was a 12-inch stainless-steel kitchen knife with a 7-inch blade. The student told detectives he intended to stab his classmates in the heart to kill them.

The student told school administrators he knew how to stab his classmates and teacher by watching the movie, “Chucky.”

The Sumter County Sheriff’s Office is working alongside school administrators on the investigation.

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