Tip leads to arrest of Berkeley High School student after gun found in back

BERKELEY COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Moncks Corner police arrested a 15-year-old Berkeley High School student after a gun was found in the teen’s backpack.

The teen, whose name was not released, faces charges of possession of a firearm and unlawful carrying of a weapon, according to Moncks Corner Police Chief Rick Ollic.

“Anytime a weapon is on campus especially a handgun it’s a dangerous situation,” Ollic said.

A message sent to parents stated the gun was loaded.

Police say they received a tip from a concerned citizen who reported seeing the teen with the gun at a bus stop, but that it wasn’t until the student was on school grounds sitting in class that law enforcement was able to detain him.

In just the 2015-2016 school years alone the Berkeley county school district has 119 cases of weapons found on campuses. One Berkeley County parent says she is terrified to send her kids to school every day.

“Our kids are being harmed, our kids are in trouble,” Amanda Venneman said. "How am I allowing myself to send my kids to school knowing they could be shot at any moment since they aren’t safe?”

Venneman said she wants to see more metal detectors in schools.

“It’s scary, very scary, I think of it every day. I have four kids in three schools, it’s terrifying,” she said. "They’re scared and they shouldn’t be, they shouldn’t have scared in their world, but they are.”

She said she has taken matters into her own hands to protect her kids, even packing doorstops in their backpacks so that in an intruder were to come inside the school, they will have one for the classroom door.

“We will do what’s necessary, that’s what we are trained for,” Ollic said. "They need to trust things are being done, we do everything we can to make sure they are safe on campus, we just need trust.”

The student is being housed at a juvenile detention facility until his appearance in family court.

The incident will not effect the football game Thursday night at the high school, according to Berkeley County School District spokeswoman Katie Orvin.

Police say the current protocol is to have 2 school resource officers at the school, but say they are continuously evaluating how to keep these schools are safe as possible.

Copyright 2018 WCSC. All rights reserved.

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