Gun found inside Raleigh high school

Gun in school

November 12, 2009 9:00:00 PM PST
Four teenagers have been charged with trespassing at Broughton High School and one was carrying a pistol.Although the .22 caliber pistol was unloaded, parents of some Broughton students were shocked to hear that a teenager who was not a student was able to get into the cafeteria with the weapon.

Broughton's cafeteria has an entrance on Saint Mary's Street and that's apparently where two 16-year-olds and two 15-year-olds came in.

John Peeler says his son, a sophomore at Broughton, was in the cafeteria at the time the incident happened.

Even though police say the gun 16-year-old Luis Sanchez was carrying was not loaded, it was a small consolation to parents.

"It's a little bit of relief, right? But it still doesn't prevent, you know, the unthinkable from happening, that somebody could have gotten in and they couldn't have stopped them in time before somebody was hurt," Peeler said.

Broughton's principal says the only good thing he has to say about the incident is that the suspects were caught quickly, because of security training that staff spotted strangers.

"When we identify students that are on campus, you know, we take action," Broughton Prinicipal Steve Mares said. "So we were able to approach the students, the individuals who weren't our students."

Also arrested was 16-year-old Israel Aquino. Only he and Sanchez were identified, because the two other suspects are 15-years-old and considered juveniles.

According to some parents, the scariest part of the gun and trespassing incident is that it could have happened anywhere.

"I don't think it reflects badly on Broughton," Peeler said. "I think it's just a societal issue we have in any place."

Officials say likely the only way to prevent the gun-in-the-cafeteria incident at Broughton or any other public school in Wake County is to lock every door and install metal detectors.

"Don't like the idea of things locked up but, on the other hand, I want to make, you know, that kids are safe," Peeler said.

Peeler says he's not sure exactly what other measures could be taken.

Some say this has been a perplexing and controversial problem ever since the Columbine High School shootings.

Most parents don't want their kids' schools run like a prison, but none of them want to think what could have happened if the gun was loaded and someone had opened fire.

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