State News

August 31, 2013

Student accused of taking gun to school

A student faces felony charges after being accused of bringing a loaded gun to a Sandy Springs middle school, and district officials are investigating whether an unarmed assistant principal who confronted the student followed proper procedures.

A police report obtained by WSB-TV shows that police arrested the 13-year-old student, whose name was not released, on Monday at the Ridgeview Charter school.

Fellow students alerted a school official that the teenager was carrying a gun and claimed he was going to shoot someone.

An assistant principal confronted the student, who was carrying the gun in his pants pocket, and escorted the teenager to the principal’s office. A police officer was then summoned.

Police said the 9 mm weapon was loaded and that the student was carrying extra ammunition. The teenager told authorities that he was a member of a street gang and needed the gun because he “wanted protection,” according to the police report.

Several parents questioned why the school building was not locked down and why an unarmed school administrator confronted an armed student.

“Where was the armed officer in the building . at the time?” said Colleen Hartman, a parent. “Why doesn’t the plan call for an armed officer to handle that and to put the building on lockdown?”

Fulton County Schools Superintendent Robert Avossa said a police officer is supposed to investigate any reports of armed students. The district is investigating why that procedure was not followed.

“We put procedures and policies in place and we have to make sure our employees follow them,” he said. “If they don’t follow the procedures and policies we put in place, there are consequences that go along with that.”

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