8th Grader Brings Gun To School, Police Looking For Answers
CHARLOTTE, NC- New worries and frustrations for Charlotte Mecklenburg parents and students.
Just one week after a stabbing, a gun was found in a student's backpack at Ashley Park Elementary School in West Charlotte.
"The least I want to do is be able to send my baby to school and know he's going to come home in one piece. If I can't do that, what are we going to do? What's going to happen?" said Sheila Alexander, a West Charlotte resident.
Alexander joined dozens of parents who rushed to Ashley Park Elementary Friday after police say an 8th grade student was found carrying a handgun on campus.
A CMS official says a teacher noticed the student was acting "pecuilar" in class. That's what led to a school resource officer searching the student's back pack and finding the gun.
"I was hysterical! I took off running out my house," said Alexander.
Students at the pre-k through 8th grade school were put on lock down for over two hours Friday while police, inclcuding a gang unit, searched the campus.
"I really didn't know what was going on. When they came and searched us, I got really, really scared," said an Ashley Park 5th grader.
A CMS spokesperson says the school sent out three ConnectED messages, but frustrated parents say they came too late - over 40 minutes after the incident.
"Coming here today to pick them up looking for answers, but nobody really has those answers so I can't reassure her if I'm not sure," said Shakira Anderson, a West Charlotte resident.
Last week, police say a 7th grader stabbed an eight grader with scissors at the bus loop during dismissal. Parents say they've had enough.
"I can't go to work everyday knowing that my kids may not be safe where they are. So, now I have a decision on what I'm going to do. I am going to continue sending them here where they don't feel safe?" said Anderson.
But others parents say the blame should not be place on the school.
"It's more than just a school problem. It's a community problem!" said Shaun Horton, a West Charlotte resident.
CMS says the incident is a good reminder of the importance of parental gun safety.
"Ensuring that guns are locked up. Not just put away...locked up!" said Millard House, CMS Chief Operating Officer.
House says there was no threats to other students or teachers