A Midland Valley High School pupil was arrested last week after school officials discovered two handguns inside a car on school property.
The 17-year-old pupil from Warrenville, S.C., was arrested Friday morning by Aiken County Sheriff’s Office deputies after arriving at the school in Graniteville, S.C., with three other classmates, smelling of marijuana, a police report of the incident states.
As the school’s assistant principal searched the pupils’ personal belongings and the vehicle they arrived in, he discovered two handguns, a Bersa .380 semi-automatic and a Charter Arm .38-caliber special in the center console of the car, according to the report.
The pupil was taken to the school office, where he wrote a statement admitting that the guns were his, the report states. The guns were checked to see if they were stolen, with the .380 a possible hit and the 38 cleared, it states.
The resource officer as well as additional law enforcement officials were contacted and assisted school administrators with the investigation and arrest, an Aiken County Public Schools news release states.
In a call to parents following the incident, Midland Valley High principal Carl White said he was grateful for local law enforcement efforts in keeping the school safe.
Shawn Foster, chief officer of Operations & Student Service, said the school works hand-in-hand with law enforcement when a pupil is arrested for a criminal offense.
“We are serious about keeping drugs and weapons out of our schools and off our school campuses,” he said in a news release. “When a student’s off- or on-campus behavior constitutes a threat to other students, staff, and our school programs, we take a very strong stance and simply don’t allow that student back in the classroom. Students arrested for dangerous crimes have a right to an education, just not at the expense of other students or the safety of our schools.”
According to the release, being under the influence of alcohol or drugs during school at school-sponsored activities or on school bus transportation is prohibited under the Student Code of Conduct. South Carolina statutes provide that any person entering school premises is deemed to have consented to a reasonable search by administrators or their designees, and therefore authorizes search of belongings such as purses, book bags, and wallets, as well as automobiles.