Secret Service questions 13-year-old over Facebook post

FRESNO, California

Now, as Dana Rebik reports, the boy's mom says she's outraged it happened without her permission.

It's the kind of call no mother wants to get.

"My phone rings and I look at it. It was the number to his school and I answered it and it's the school security guard just giving me an FYI, you know, 'For your information, just to give you a heads up, the Secret Service is here with the Tacoma Police Department and they have Vito and they're talking to him.'"

Turns out, after Osama bin Laden was killed, Vito Lapinta posted an update to his Facebook status that got the feds attention.

"I was saying how Osama is dead and for Obama to be careful because there might be suicide bombers."

A week later, while Vito was in his fourth period class, he got called to the principal's office.

"A man walked in, in a suit and glasses. And he said that he was part of the Secret Service. And he told me it was because of a post I made and it indicated as a threat towards the president."

Tacoma schools did acknowledge that a Secret Service agent questioned Vito, but after that the story becomes very different. They say a security guard called Vito's mom because the principal was on the other line, and that they didn't wait for her to arrive because they felt that she didn't take the phone call seriously.

"That's a blatant lie."

Timi Robertson says she rushed to Truman Middle School immediately, and arrived to discover her boy had already been questioned for half an hour.

"I just about lost it. My son, my 13-year-old son, who is a minor, who is supposed to be safe and secure in his classroom at school is being interrogated, without my knowledge or consent, privately, by the Secret Service."

"I was very scared."

The seventh grader says once his mom showed up, the agent finished the interview and told him he wasn't in any trouble. Now, he's more careful about what he posts online. But Timi says the school and the secret service are the ones who need to watch themselves.

"For me, it's not about what my son did or didn't do. It's the way they handled it because he`s still a child."

Vito's mother says she isn't financially able to take legal action, but hopes her family's story raises awareness about the treatment she says her son endured. Local media reached out to the Seattle branch of the Secret Service but got no response.

Copyright © 2021 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.