The Texas teenager arrested for bringing a homemade digital clock to school after it was mistaken for a bomb says he would like his invention back from police, adding that he has no plans to let the incident stop his “passion” for inventing.
“This isn’t my first invention and it won’t be my last invention,” Ahmed Mohamed, 14, said today on “Good Morning America” from his home in Irving, Texas.
Ahmed, a freshman at MacArthur High School in Irving, Texas, was taken into police custody Monday when school officials and police mistook his invention for a bomb.
The teen described being unable to call his parents while he was interrogated by police after bringing the clock, which remains in police custody, to school to “impress” a teacher.
"She saw a clock that, in her opinion, looked like a threat to her," Ahmed said of the unnamed teacher. “It felt really weird getting arrested because I never thought I’d ever get arrested."
“I repeatedly told them, ‘It’s a clock,’ but no matter how much I told them, I guess that’s not a bold enough answer to them," he said of police. "I want it [the clock] back, with my humility."
Irving Police officials eventually released Ahmed and said at a news conference Wednesday that no charges will be brought against teenager for bringing a “suspicious device” to school.
The incident drew worldwide attention to the Muslim-American boy, who received an invitation to the White House from President Obama himself.
Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It's what makes America great.— President Obama (@POTUS) September 16, 2015
Ahmed also heard from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, received invitations to intern at Twitter and join a Google science competition and inspired the hashtag #IStandWithAhmed, used by Hillary Clinton and celebrities like Russell Simmons.
“I was scared at the moment but now I feel really happy that I’m getting all this support from all over the world and the support isn’t just for me but it’s for everyone who’s been through this,” Ahmed said on “GMA.” “I wanted to have my teacher see that I want to be an engineer when I grow up, so I guess now I get millions of people watching me be an engineer.”
Ahmed was suspended from his high school for three days and has said he is considering transferring to a new school. In the meantime, he says he “will accept” the offer from President Obama to visit the White House, but was most excited, out of all the attention, to hear from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
“I dream of going there,” he said.
The budding inventor said he would also be happy to hear from “Shark Tank,” the reality TV show that gives inventors a chance to put their products in the national spotlight and get funding from a panel of successful “shark” entrepreneurs.
“I’ve wanted to be on ... and I guess now I have a chance to be on there, only if the entrepreneurs on that show would accept me,” Ahmed said.