School shooter's mom talks about her son - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Farmington, MO

School shooter's mom talks about her son

School shooter's mom talks about her son
By: CJ Cassidy

Columbine, Jonesboro, Heath. Three names of schools that cause many parents to fear their children will experience violence at school.

You may remember the panic that broke out at Farmington High last October when 17-year-old Joshua Minks fired a gun in school.

Now as minks awaits sentencing, his mother says school leaders ignored the warning signs.

The day was October 11th, 2005. A day very few at Farmington High will forget.

That's the day Josh Minks opened fire inside a school bathroom.

The masked teenager struck fear into the hearts of students and teachers alike, but his mother, says that's the same kind of fear he lived with everyday.

"Josh was being called gay names every single day. He was being harassed every single day," Amanda Minks says.

The teen stands 6' 5" tall and weighs more than 400 pounds.

Amanda says not only did her autistic son put up with the teasing and taunting, he also hated telling on anyone who made fun of him.

In fact, documents show school personnel promised to revisit safety procedures to reassure Josh of the safety of the school.

Still, Minks says the bullying didn't stop.

"A young man came up to Joshua and tried to set him on fire twice. The school did not contact me like they were supposed to," she says.

Farmington School leaders would not speak about Josh's case. They did however send me a copy of their hazing and bullying policy.

It states all incidents will be investigated, and any staff violating the policy would be disciplined or terminated.

But Amanda Minks doesn't put all the blame on school leaders. She calls the shooting a suicide attempt.

"Joshua wanted the officer to shoot him. I know that in my heart. He did not have the courage," she says and adds that if she could do anything differently, she would have home schooled her son.

Minks says her son takes responsibility for his actions.

As for herself, she mainly wants people to realize that bullying can have very serious consequences.and she wants school leaders sit up and take notice .

She also says her son could face anywhere from probation to eight years in prison.

He will be sentenced September 15th.

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