A 14-year-old Truckee student was met at the school bus by police officers Tuesday morning and taken into custody for allegedly bringing a firearm to school.
Tahoe Truckee Unified School District officials notified the Truckee Police Department at 7:15 a.m. that they had been informed by a parent that the boy, an eighth-grade student at Alder Creek Middle School, was bringing a handgun to the campus.
The gun, a .40-caliber semiautomatic, was instead found by officers in an unsecured area at the boy’s home, said Police Chief Adam McGill.
Officers learned he had taken it to school in a backpack Monday, showing it to at least four other boys throughout the day. He reportedly had found the unsecured firearm while looking for his mobile phone, which had been taken from him by his parents for disciplinary purposes, police said.
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Investigators were unable to determine if the gun was loaded or if any ammunition was present while it was on campus Monday. Unsecured ammunition was found in close proximity to the unlocked storage area at the home where the gun was found unloaded Tuesday.
The student was arrested and released on a juvenile citation for felony charges of bringing a firearm on a school campus.
The case remains under investigation as to whether the parents will face any criminal charges for not securing the firearm and ammunition, McGill said in a news release. Any school disciplinary action will be determined by school officials.
While it appears the boy brought the firearm to school to “show it off,” McGill said, “this event was preventable and could have ended in tragedy. It should serve as an urgent reminder to gun owners.
“Not only are you required by law to prevent access to children, firearms are also a favorite target for burglars,” he said. “If you own a firearm, be responsible and invest in a lockable storage device.”