TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — A Tampa high school student was arrested after police said he brought a loaded gun on campus.
On Wednesday, police said school staff members at Blake High School reprimanded several students for hanging out in the school stairwell, which is not allowed.
When students were taken to the administrative office, their backpacks were searched by the staff members.
One of the students, a 15-year-old, refused to have his backpack searched, police said.
Officers said the school called the boy’s mother, who came to the school and searched her son’s backpack in the presence of administrators.
When the woman did not find anything suspicious, she handed the bag to an administrator to conduct an additional search.
The administrator opened a pencil pouch inside the backpack and found a loaded .380 semi-automatic pistol, police said.
The student was arrested and charged with possessing a firearm on school property, police said.
“It is incredibly concerning that yet another student has not only gotten their hands on a loaded firearm, but carelessly chose to bring the weapon with them to school,” said Chief Mary O’Connor. “Combating this issue must be a community effort. Parents, don’t be afraid to search your child’s bedroom, backpack, or their cell phones to make sure they are making good decisions. It is your responsibility to do so for the safety of your child and others. As always, we continue urging students to speak up if they believe a classmate or friend could have a weapon.”