LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Fayette County Schools officials said Wednesday afternoon that a student was able to bring a loaded gun into Frederick Douglass High School.
According to a release from the school, the student made it into the building with the gun, despite being checked by a handheld metal detector.
District leaders say the student, who has not been identified, arrived at the school after normal start time, entering just before 9 a.m.
The loaded weapon was not discovered until about 1:30 p.m., when administrators found the gun inside the student’s backpack.
Officials said private, third-party security guards wanded the student with a handheld metal detector and checked his backpack.
The student went through the front door instead of the side entrances, which are equipped with walk-though metal detectors, because he was late arriving.
According to the district, the student was charged with possession of a weapon on school property and possession of a stolen handgun.
This incident comes two months after the district passed a countywide tax increase for school safety measures that included metal detectors and extra officers, among other things.
During the last semester, a student accidentally fired a gun and shot himself in a classroom.
The principal released a statement to families:
Dear Frederick Douglass High School Families:
One of my top priorities as the principal at Frederick Douglass High School is to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff. Maintaining open lines of communication between home and school is critical in order for us to maintain the trust of our families and build strong relationships with the people we serve.
This afternoon, we determined that one of our students had a gun with him at school. The student did not enter the building through the walk-through metal detectors this morning. He checked in after the day had started and came through the front entrance, where he was wanded using a handheld metal detector, and his backpack was checked.
We are working with our contracted security ambassadors to revisit search procedures. The student has been charged with possession of a weapon on school property and possession of a stolen handgun. He will face serious administrative consequences through the school district, and may also face legal consequences through the juvenile court system.
Any time we have a health or safety issue on campus, we want to be sure our families have the most accurate information directly from us. We are committed to keeping Frederick Douglass High School a safe place to learn and work.
Thank you for the privilege of serving your family and for understanding that we take this matter very seriously. As always, please don’t hesitate to call me with questions or concerns at 859-381-3780.
Lester Diaz, Principal.