COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) – A former Colorado Springs student faces an attempted murder charge after reportedly making threats against various schools in one of the city's largest school districts.
According to the 18th Judicial District Attorney’s Office, 19-year-old William Whitworth - who identifies as “Lilly”- was charged after an investigation into "threats involving schools in Colorado Springs Academy District 20."
Whitworth was arrested by the Elbert County Sheriff's Office and formally charged with the following offenses:
- Criminal attempt to commit murder in the first degree (two counts)
- Criminal mischief
- Interference with staff, faculty, or students of educational institutions
A spokesperson for District 20 told 13 Investigates the suspect attended school in the district between 2014 and 2016, during which they attended both in-person and the district’s Homeschool Academy.
According to an arrest affidavit obtained by 13 Investigates, deputies with the ECSO were dispatched to a disturbance in incorporated Elbert County on March 31, 2023, at 7:18 p.m.
- Sister just made a violent approach to Reporting Party (RP)
- Sister threatened to shoot up a school
- Sister has ever anger issues
- Sister made comments day before yesterday ref school shooting
At the scene, deputies spoke with someone at the door who said that someone inside was "very upset and punched holes inside the walls." That person, however, did not immediately let deputies inside.
Once inside, deputies noted in the affidavit two holes that appeared to be punch marks in the wall. The door to a bedroom was off its hinges and lying beside the opening. Inside a bedroom, deputies found RP's sister on a bed. The sister identified herself as Lilly, but further investigation determined her birth name is William Whitworth.
The affidavit refers to Whitworth as Lilly and uses she/her pronouns.
While speaking with Whitworth, deputies noted she "appeared to be very drowsy and could not stay awake." She would answer questions with her eyes closed.
When asked if she was going to shoot up a school, the affidavit states Whitworth "visibly shook her head and down indicating yes." When asked why she'd do that, Whitworth stated, "Why does anyone do it."
According to the affidavit, Whitworth said the last school she attended was Timberview Middle School in District 20. When asked if that was the school she was going to "shoot up," Whitworth again nodded yes. When asked why that school, Whitworth stated, "No specific reason."
During the initial interaction with Whitworth, deputies noted she made suicidal statements. According to the affidavit, Whitworth also said she was "a little drunk" and swayed back and forth while walking down the hallway out of the bedroom.
While waiting for the fire department, Whitworth was asked how much she had been planning the school shooting. She stated she was "about a third of the way from doing it," verifying again that Timberview Middle School was one of the "main targets" currently and other targets were churches.
Whitworth stated she'd been planning it for a month or two, stated the layout of the school, active firearm planning, and started a manifesto.
According to the affidavit, investigators found the manifesto, a dry-erase board with floor plans, and a list of names in a notebook.
Whitworth said the manifesto was four pages long and had "schizophrenic rants" on them. However, the affidavit states when deputies asked if she was schizophrenic, she replied "I hope not."
According to the affidavit, Whitworth was asked how much she knew about school shootings, and she stated, "Too much." When asked what she meant by that, Whitworth stated "There's a page in my manifesto and there's a bunch of mass killers."
On the dry-erase board, investigators noted it looked like a labeled floor plan of a school, with labels identifying the office, bathrooms, classrooms, and the different levels.
In two different notebooks, deputies found more floor plans, a drawing of a clock to use a detonation device stating, "Remove clock intemials and drive a screw into the desired detonation time on the face of the clock, and "Is this what they meant when they said making a mockery of the massacre?"
Whitmore stated she watched a video on YouTube on "how to do it" regarding the picture of a detonator.
Deputies obtained a search warrant of the home and found "The Communist Manifesto" by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels and more books with notes. Written inside one book had written inside, "Ways I want to die," with a list stating murder, burning alive, freezing, and drowning.
Another book had the following statements found inside, according to the arrest affidavit:
In short, a brief of the manifestos contents detailed:
- A list of firearms and how to 3D print them
- Detailed lists of numerous named individuals to be killed and their indented casualty versus injury rate.
- Information detailing the creation of improvised explosive devices
- The Finalization of locations being Timberview Middle School, Prairie Hills Elementary, and Pine Creek High School
According to the affidavit, one of the notebooks also had a list of various mass shooters, serial killers, politicians, and entertainers with commentary on each.
Below is how the names were listed in the affidavit:
- Eric and Dylan: Losers
- Adam Lanza: To smart
- Isreal Keyes: Degenerate
- Lauren Southern: Pathetic
- Vaush: Terrorist
- Donald J. Trump: Con-mam
- Bad cops: Useless garbage
- Stockholm, Name: Liam K.
Whitworth has a preliminary hearing scheduled for May 5, 2023. The bond is currently set at $75,000.