GREEN BAY, Wis. -- Two 17-year-olds suspected of plotting a shooting spree at their high school were fascinated with the mass killings at Columbine High School and had homemade bombs and weapons at their homes, investigators said yesterday .
The boys were arrested Thursday at East High School after a student went to an associate principal.
``If someone hadn't come forward, we'd be talking about funerals instead of charges," said Brown County District Attorney John Zakowski.
William C. Cornell and Shawn R. Sturtz were arrested for suspicion of conspiracy to commit first-degree intentional homicide and conspiracy to commit arson.
Police found nine rifles and shotguns, a handgun, about 20 ``crudely made" explosive devices, camouflage clothing, gas masks, two-way radios, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition at Cornell's house, Police Captain Lisa Sterr said. She said Cornell had made several of the improvised explosive devices about two months ago. At Sturtz's home, police found knives and ammunition, Sterr said. Police said they also found mannequin heads that appeared to have been used for target practice, and suicide notes.
No dangerous materials were found at the school, Sterr said.
The two teens had long been fascinated by the April 1999 Columbine massacre in Littleton, Colo., in which two students armed with guns, knives, and bombs killed 12 classmates and a teacher before killing themselves, Sterr said.
In Montreal on Wednesday, an attacker killed a student at Dawson College and wounded 20 others before killing himself. Kimveer Gill, 25, had dressed in a black trench coat like the Columbine shooters, posted online photos of himself with weapons, and said he liked to play an Internet role game about the Columbine killings.