The night before he was arrested with a stolen gun at a local high school, a Texarkana teen allegedly threatened to shoot a former girlfriend on campus.
Ladarious Kashone Cardwell-Forte, 17, allegedly went to a unit of the Lakeridge Apartments in Wake Village, Texas, where the 14-year-old girl lived with her mother at about 8:30 p.m. March 18, according to a probable cause affidavit. The girl's mother told police that Cardwell-Forte was "yelling and cursing" when she answered a knock at the door.
The mother reported that the girl and Cardwell-Forte had been boyfriend and girlfriend for about six weeks when their relationship ended and her daughter started "talking" to a different young man. Cardwell-Forte allegedly demanded that his former girlfriend call the second young man.
Cardwell-Forte, draped in a blanket, allegedly threw the phone to the ground after speaking to his rival. Two young women with Cardwell-Forte were allegedly trying to calm him when he pulled out a pistol and pointed it at the mother and her daughter through the apartment door.
The mother reported that she slammed the door, locked it, ushered her children into a back room and extinguished the lights. When Wake Village police arrived, the mother showed them text messages sent March 16 in which Cardwell-Forte allegedly threatened to kill the girl and her new boyfriend at school.
Liberty-Eylau Independent School District Chief of Police Bart Veal, who was coordinating with local police, had documented text messages from Cardwell-Forte to the girl stating he would "blow her head off at school because he really doesn't care."
Officers searched for Cardwell-Forte that night but were unable to locate him. Early the following morning, officers gathered at Liberty-Eylau High School in search of Cardwell-Forte.
The officers noticed a student arriving late who had just signed in at the front office and stopped him in a hallway as he headed toward classrooms. In the waistband of Cardwell-Forte's pants, officers found a 9 mm handgun that had been reported stolen in Texarkana, Texas.
He was arrested for aggravated assault with a deadly weapon by Wake Village police in connection with his alleged conduct at the apartment March 18. The Liberty-Eylau ISD police are listed as the arresting agency on charges of possession of a weapon on school property and theft of a firearm.
Police and school officials said that the situation could have been far worse had it not been for the mother who contacted law enforcement and the hard work of the officers who worked the case.
"Thankfully, this incident turned out with no injuries thanks to the dedication of Officer (Jeremy) Johnson, Officer (Jason) Woolridge and Chief Veal and the communication between our agencies," Wake Village Police Chief Todd Aultman said. "The Wake Village Police Department takes the threat of school violence seriously and believes one of the best tools against all crime is inter-agency communication. We will do our part to pass on all pertinent information to other law enforcement agencies and our schools."
L-EISD spokesman Matt Fry said he is grateful to both the district's police department and Wake Village police for their work and to the parent of the child who reported the matter to police.
"Imagine what could have happened if they had stayed quiet, brushed it off," Fry said.
Cardwell-Forte is being held in the Bowie County jail. Bail amounts in the case total $70,000. Cardwell-Forte appeared Tuesday before 102nd District Judge Jeff Addison for a pre-indictment hearing. Addison rescheduled the case for a hearing in June.
A shooting earlier this week at a campus in Colorado brings the number of school shootings this year to 35.