Investigators find suspicious devices inside home of man threatening to shoot up school

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CUMMING, Ga. - Investigators said they found two suspicious devices while searching the home of a Forsyth County man they said threatened to shoot up a school, leading officials to put Forsyth and Gwinnett County schools on alert.

Police said Joseph Medved, 51, of Cumming, was at a drug clinic Wednesday when he said he was going to shoot up a school.

"He wanted to go out and buy a long rifle and shoot up a school," said Doug Rainwater of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office.

Rainwater told Chanel 2's Dave Huddleston that Medved made the threat at a Fulton County drug clinic.
The staff contacted police, who arrived at the clinic and followed Medved as he went to a store to buy a 12-gauge shotgun.

"But because of the 24-hour background check required, he couldn't buy one," Rainwater said. "There was no way we were going to let him take the shotgun, get back in the truck and drive away."

Police said Medved went back to the store Thursday morning, bought the rifle, took it home and started shooting.

"He went out near the roadway and shot the shotgun eight to nine times," Rainwater said.

Neighbors said they heard the shotgun blasts but didn't know what it was at the time. But local and federal agents did -- that's when they made their move.

"The deputy sheriff assigned to the task force secured the warrant for the terrorist acts and threats," Rainwater said.

Sources within the Sheriff's Office told Huddleston all 32 Forsyth County schools were notified Wednesday of Medved's threats.

"That's pretty scary they'd make that kind of threat," parent Susan Cohran said.

But parents were never notified of the threat.

"With all the crazy people out there, especially if they saw he was doing shooting practice, then we needed to know there was a possibility our kids could be in danger," Cohran said.

Many parents told Huddleston they wished they had known.

North Gwinnett High School was also put on alert because Medved went to that school.

Medved has been taken into custody and is being held in the Forsyth County jail.

Late Thursday afternoon, Channel 2's Mike Petchenik was there as investigators with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and federal agents surrounded Medved's home in Cumming, working on information that he may have some kind of explosive inside.

FBI investigators said they found two suspicious devices while searching Medved's home.

"We found a device (which had) two aerosol cans, taped up, with tube coming from each end. Also around the can were nuts and bolts," Rainwater told Channel 2's Rachel Stockman.

Medved's son, John Medved, showed Stockman the basement, where the agents found the device.

"They are nothing more than spray paint taped together to spray lawn mowers with," John Medved said.

He said he believed the situation was being blown out of proportion.

"He gets pissed off and he makes comments that he does not mean," John Medved said.

Authorities said they take threats like this very seriously.

Medved is scheduled to appear in court Friday morning. He has been moved to the Fulton County Jail.

Deputies told Channel 2 Action News they are very familiar with Medved. He has an extensive drug record that dates back some 15 years. All those charges against him were misdemeanors.


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