A 12-year old Sikh boy who has undergone three heart surgeries was kept in a Texas juvenile facility for three days after he and his classmate jokes about him having a bomb in his backpack. The boy, named Armaan Singh Sarai, was arrested on Friday, Dec.11 and kept behind bars at a Juvenile facility for three consecutive days without his parents being informed.
Armaan thought the classmate was kidding
The Sikh boy’s cousin Ginee Haer wrote in a Facebook post, “A bully in class thought it would be funny to accuse him of having a bomb, and so the principal, without any questioning, interrogation, or notification to his parents, called the police.” He was released on Monday, said Ginee Haer in a post that has received more than 20,000 Likes and 9,100 shares on Facebook.
Armaan said he thought his classmate was kidding when he said he would tell the teacher Armaan had a bomb in his backpack and was planning to blow up Nichols Junior High School in Arlington. On Dec.10, a day before Armaan was taken into custody, the classmate had joked that the battery charger in Armaan’s backpack looked like a bomb. “I thought it was a joke, so I started laughing and he started laughing,” Armaan recalled. “The next thing you know, I’m reading with my friend and police come in, grab me and take me outside.”
The Sikh boy has undergone three open heart surgeries
Police interviewed the Sikh boy briefly before evacuating the classroom to examine his backpack. Officers recognized that it was a prank, but they handcuffed him and took to the detention center in a squad car. “I was really scared, really nervous,” Armaan said.
The seventh-grader’s family had moved to Austin, Texas only about four months ago. His parents got worried when he did not return home from school on Friday. They started looking for him. Then the school’s principal told them that Armaan had been taken into custody, but the principal did not know where he was taken. They started calling every police department in the area. Eventually, they learned by calling 911 that Armaan was kept in juvenile detention until a judge could review his case.
Armaan’s family blamed the bully classmate who started the prank. They said they were especially worried about the stress the boy was going through, since he had undergone three open heart surgeries. They also called the whole investigation unfair and biased. The kid was kept with teenagers accused of serious crimes such as drug possession and theft.