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Police have charged a 12-year-old for using emojis

After the schoolgirl posted 🔪 💣🔫 on Instagram, police charged her with threatening to blow up the school library

It’s sometimes hard to remember a time before emojis – a time when a suggestive late-night text actually had to use words, rather than ✊✊💦. But if you think it’s difficult for our generation, imagine how hard it is for the 12-year-old girl who’s just been arrested for allegedly threatening to blow up her school using emoji on Instagram. Because all the most credible bomb threats come in emoji form, obviously. 

The Washington Post reports that a 12-year-old girl is facing criminal charges after posting ‘threatening’ messages against her school on Instagram. Police in Virginia say that the girl – who has not been named due to her age – posted the following message in December.

Killing 🔫

“meet me in the library Tuesday”

🔫 🔪 💣

The girl has been charged with threatening the school and computer harassment, although it remains to be seen whether the police will pursue the case against her all the way through to the juvenile courts, because – well, frankly, it’s a bit ridiculous, even for the States. But this isn’t the first time that emojis have made an appearance in US courtrooms. Last year, a New York court dropped charges against 17-year-old Osiris Aristy after he was accused of threatening police officers on Facebook with the following 👮🔫.

So in case you were thinking of dialling in a bomb threat using emoji to get off work this morning – don’t do it. Unless you want to end up in jail, that is.