The Chappaqua boy who was arrested last month for threatening a school shooting and transmitting menacing texts to another student will remain at Westchester County Jail until he is placed in a psychiatric facility.
Luke Visser, 16, appeared before Town Justice Denis Timone in Somers Town Court late Monday where his lawyer, Stephen Riebling, attempted to get him released on bail. Riebling cited a psychiatric examination reporting that Visser is cognitively and emotionally stable and is not a threat to himself or others.
Visser was arrested on May 12 and charged with making a terroristic threat, a class D felony, and second-degree aggravated harassment, a class A misdemeanor for threatening to initiate a shooting at the Westfield Day School in Armonk where he has been a student.
The North Castle Police Department and state police learned that Visser had allegedly sent threatening texts that included photographs of him standing with what appeared to be a rifle, a state police spokesman said.
Visser was found at his family’s home in Chappaqua and admitted to making the threats. Police also found four rifles in the residence that were legally owned by others in the household. Those firearms were removed by state police.
Riebling said Visser should return home to a “safe and stable environment” where he can resume his therapeutic treatment and his schooling to ensure he completes his Regents exams. Following exams, Riebling said Visser would be moved to a residential hospital.
However, Timone and the district attorney’s office countered that Visser is a threat and should remain incarcerated until he is placed in a secure facility. Timone also questioned why those arrangements haven’t been made since Visser’s May 14 arraignment.
Riebling said many inpatient facilities don’t have available beds and require an in-person interview prior to acceptance. Attorney Marion Walsh, who is working with the Chappaqua Central School District to get Visser placed in an appropriate facility, said there has been contact with hospitals within the area, including Westchester Medical Center.
Timone instructed Visser’s family and legal team to work swiftly to get the teen placed in a facility. Upon placement, Timone said he would bring the case back to court to resolve any further issues.
Visser is tentatively scheduled to return to court June 18 unless the case goes before the judge at an earlier date.