NY “Dreamer” Abigail Hernandez has been accused of threatening to shoot up East High School in Rochester, New York in a Facebook post. Her father, Eufracio Torres, is defending her, saying the family doesn’t believe she could have made such a threat.
NY “Dreamer” Abigail Hernandez, 21, a special-needs student in the Rochester City School District, has been charged with making a terroristic threat, which is a felony. She is currently being held in the Buffalo Federal Detention Center in Batavia because she is an undocumented immigrant.
The story first broke on February 16, 2018 after the Rochester City School District called police about a credible threat posted on the East High School Facebook page. In the now-deleted post, the writer said, “I’m coming tomorrow morning and I’m going to shoot all of ya b—-es.”
It took police a number days to track down a suspect because the threat was made from a fake account. When officers tracked Hernandez down at her home on February 20, they found a shotgun inside. Torres, her father, says it belongs to him.
During their investigation, agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) determined that Hernandez is a Dreamer; an undocumented immigrant living in the U.S. under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.
On February 23, Shaun C. Nelms, superintendent of East High School, released a statement saying, “Sadly, in wake of the recent Parkland, Florida tragedy, schools across the country have been grappling with social media threats intended to instill fear and anxiety.
“While we cannot comment on this particular police investigation around a threat made to East, I want to stress how fortunate we are to be part of a community in which the police department works closely with schools to ensure the safety of the entire school community.”
Abigail Hernandez is a student at Edison Tech High School. She switched over to Edison from East High a few years ago because it had a special education program better suited to her needs.
Parents Defend Abigail Hernandez
Her parents, meanwhile, maintain that Hernandez has very low cognitive skills and could not possibly have carried out the threat she’s been charged with making.
“She’s not right mentally—she doesn’t pick up what people say,” her mother said in Spanish. She asked not to be identified. “She’s very dependent on me.”
Hernandez came to the U.S. with her parents when she was three years old. Torres says both he and his wife have their green cards. He adds that he works 80 hours a week as a bus driver and owns seven houses in northeast Rochester.
Hernandez now faces the prospect of deportation.