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Nutley Student Accused of Posting Social Media Threat, Built Replica of School on Minecraft

By kcora on

An 18-year-old Nutley student charged after posting an alleged threat last week has detectives unveiling a series of disturbing social media posts.

According to Assistant Prosecutor Alexander Albu, Joseph Rafanello, 18, on a video game - Minecraft - created what authorities say is a replica of the school.

In the video, Rafanello's avatar is allegedly seen walking through the virtual school while the sound of gunshots could be heard in the background. In addition, investigators found numerous social media messages where Rafanello joked about death or often shared news of school shootings.

Officials said the investigation against Rafanello ensued after a video was posted on Instagram showing someone firing a gun at a shooting range and a still photo of Nutley High School on Feb. 16th.

Superior Court Judge Peter V. Ryan today despite prosecutors' motion to keep Rafanello in jail pending trial, placed Rafanello on home detention with an electronic monitoring device.

In addition, Rafanello was barred from having any access to firearms. Officials confirmed that Rafanello's father has since voluntarily turned over his firearms to the Nutley Police Department for safekeeping.