18-year-old accused of threatening to shoot people at Buchanan High graduation pleads not guilty

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Kyle Dwelle, 18, appeared in court for the first time Thursday where he pled not guilty. (KFSN)

Kyle Dwelle held his sack lunch in his lap Thursday before he pleaded not guilty to two counts of threatening to commit a crime that would cause death or great bodily injury.

Attorney Roger Nuttall was hired by Dwelle's family. He's spent time getting to know his client the past few days and says the 18-year-old is not a dangerous man.

"He's not going to hurt anyone. I can assure everyone of that."

Nuttall acknowledged Dwelle is depressed and needs some sort of evaluation.

"He's going to need to stay busy and probably have some evaluation by professionals to help him to understand why he did this and not to do it again."

RELATED: Buchanan High student arrested after threatening to shoot up school

But Fresno County Deputy District Attorney Andrew Janz said Dwelle's threats should be taken seriously, especially since he made at least some effort to prepare for a shooting.

"He made steps to purchase a firearm. He reached out to a firearms dealer and a friend he knew to possess illegal firearms."

Concern and fear from the community and district leaders prompted Clovis Unified officials to petition for a restraining order. The order bans Dwelle from campus and forces him to stay away from a teacher that he told detectives that, "If he was going to shoot someone, it would be her."

Two students were also listed in the court document and wrote statements about what Dwelle told them and what they heard second hand.

RELATED: Buchanan student had gun, planned to wear Nazi band and shoot up graduation, students say

The judge imposed on a no-bail hold on Dwelle, ensuring that he will stay in the Fresno County, for now.

Across town, at the Buchanan High graduation, security was stepped up with all students being patted down to check for weapons.

Dwelle's status as a student is unclear; district officials say he could be suspended or expelled in the weeks to come.
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