Pittsburgh Teen Charged as Adult for Allegedly Trying to Light School Security Guards on Fire

A 16-year-old Pittsburgh girl has been charged as an adult for allegedly throwing gasoline on two high school security guards and trying to light them on fire.

Imani Lorraine Knight-Brantley, a student at Pittsburgh’s West Side Wilkinsburg High School, claimed that one of the two guards had called her names and put her in a headlock the Friday before the assault, police said.

The week before, the student had reportedly run afoul of school rules by using a cell phone during class, and administrators were preparing to suspend her. By the next Monday, she was still fuming about the incident.

On Monday, the teen was in the office discussing the previous week’s incident, when she allegedly suddenly whipped out a soda bottle filled with gasoline and began to throw it on school guard Brandon Murray and school security chief Leah Pyle. The officials say she then tried to use an outdoor grill lighter to set them both aflame.

The teen was arrested for the assault and charged as an adult on such charges as aggravated assault, risking a catastrophe, possession of a weapon on school property, and recklessly endangering another person.

School authorities report that the guard will not return to the school until an investigation into the girl’s claims of mistreatment are assessed.

District Judge Jim Motznik set the girl’s bond at $100,000. He also ordered that Knight-Brantley undergo a mental health evaluation and treatment at the Allegheny County Jail behavioral clinic.

This is yet another incident to add to the school’s woes. Wilkinsburg High School is set to close later this year; authorities say that students will be split up to other schools in the area.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at igcolonel@hotmail.com.


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