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LCMS student brings pellet gun to school
8th grader being held at local youth detention; faces charges
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    A Langston Chapel Middle School student who brought a pellet gun to school Monday may have been simply pulling a prank, but his unwise decision resulted in a school lock down and his being taken into custody by sheriff's deputies.
    And while it is against school system policy to discuss disciplinary actions against students, state and federal law require "at least one calendar year expulsion," for students who bring weapons to school, said  Hayley G. Greene, public relations spokesperson for the Bulloch County Board of Education.
    The 13-year-old eighth grade male student was "removed from school" after the incident,  she said.
    Bulloch County Sheriff's Chief Inv. Capt. Todd Hutchens said the teen was charged with carrying/possession of a weapon on school property, unruly juvenile, disrupting a public school and obstruction. The boy is being detained in the Claxton Regional Youth Detention Center, he said.
    While Greene referred to the weapon as a "toy gun," that "looked realistic," Hutchens said the weapon "was not a toy," adding that law enforcement considers a pellet gun a true weapon.
    The incident unfolded Monday when some students told school leaders the boy had a suspected firearm, and according to school policy, Principal Elizabeth Williams immediately called the Bulloch County Sheriff's Department, Greene said.
    Deputies responded, took the boy into custody, seized the pellet gun, and searched the school while it was "locked down," she said. The lock down is normal procedure for when a situation is determined to be even a possible danger to students and faculty.
    Williams also contacted parents of each of the school's 612 students, using the school system's crisis communications telephone system, Greene said. Williams "assured them of their child's safety and how the incident was handled."
    Bulloch County schools follow an "Emergency Preparedness Procedures Plan" during any crisis or possibly dangerous situation, and the Langston Chapel Middle School staff  "followed proper procedures by assessing the situation. locking down the school, contacting 911, keeping students calm and quiet, and allowing law enforcement to complete their search."
    "I am pleased with the way that students, faculty and staff responded to the incident and how they remained calm while deputies performed their duties," said Bulloch County School Superintendent Dr. Lewis Holloway.

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