BB Gun Fired at Des Moines School

DES MOINES, Iowa – Police say the case of a child who brought a BB gun to River Woods Elementary School in Des Moines and threatened students on Tuesday will be handled by juvenile courts.

“The school has a zero-tolerance policy for weapons and violence,” said Sergeant Paul Parizak of the Des Moines Police Department. “The police department responded out here when they verified that there was in fact a BB gun on the school grounds. I don’t know whether or not the student knew it was allowed or not.”

According to a police report, the incident happened around 4 p.m. on Tuesday, after students had been dismissed from the year-round school. The suspect threatened to shoot four classmates with a BB gun, while firing at a nearby tree on school grounds. School security and the Des Moines Police Department responded immediately, confiscating the weapon, and no one was harmed.

The school sent a letter home with students the following day, Wednesday, after classes ended. But one parent expressed concern that they weren’t told sooner.

“Parents found out via a note sent home with kids, the school didn’t even send a robo call,” said Rebecca Rohmiller in an email. “Horrible demonstration of communication through Des Moines Public Schools.”

In an email statement made by a school representative, River Woods maintained that sending a letter home with students the following day is standard procedure.

“Given the timing of the event and it’s quick resolution, standard notification is a letter home to our parents,” said Amanda Lewis, Communications Officer of Des Moines Public Schools in the statement.


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