PACKING IN THE BOYS ROOM
Alert teachers suspecting vape use found kids carrying guns Thursday
Authorities are taking further action after guns showed up at Charlestown High School, with the courts holding the older teen held without bail and the schools looking to reinstall metal detectors.
Police reports, available on Friday after the Thursday incidents, detail — amid the constellation of redactions — what went down, and it all started with suspicions of vaping.
One teacher saw a kid — both of their names are redacted — come out of a bathroom and toss some vape packaging into the trash around 10 a.m. Thursday, the staffer would later tell police, according to a report.
The teacher approached the 13-year-old boy, and tried to get him to come with him, but the kids said he “gotta give somebody something” as the teen walked toward a classroom, per the report.
But the teacher talked the kid into coming to an office, and said he’d search his bag. The teen was “initially hesitant,” but the teacher searched the student’s backpack, and inside found a fanny pack.
And upon inspection, the staffers later told the cops, the fanny pack held something a bit more concerning than a vape pen: a Glock 9mm with eight rounds in it.
The teacher alerted other staff, who put the school in “safe mode” and called 911, per the police report.
Police officers arriving at the school arrested the teen and he was later arraigned and held on $2,500 bail on juvenile weapons charges.
The second arrest, the one of the 17-year-old boy, is harder to parse because entire lines of the police report are redacted, rather than just the names, like in the previous one.
But it appears that school administrators and the cops who showed up for the first arrest checked out video and became worried that a different teen they watched going in and out of a bathroom might be packing, too.
The report says that officers wanted to pat-frisk this older teen — who the report says was “well known” to the school administrators talking to the cops — but then most of the next few lines of the police report are blacked out, so it’s unclear what then happened. Whatever the case, the gun “recovered by school administrators” ended up in a fourth-floor room where they turned it over to cops without further incident.
“As a result of 2 firearms being recovered at Charlestown High School, Boston Police K-9 Units conducted a sweep of the entire school” after that, the police wrote.
That second teen was arraigned on juvenile weapons charges on Friday, when he was held pending a further dangerousness hearing June 1 to determine if he’d remain in custody.
“The request for the dangerousness hearing was based on an existing open gun case pre-dating yesterday’s incident,” Suffolk District Attorney Kevin Hayden’s office said.
Asked on Friday morning about metal detectors at Charlestown High, Mayor Michelle Wu said she “told that they will be reinstalled.”
“My understanding is that this is about the concerns about crowding and wanting to give additional space for the whole entryway to be used rather than students squeezing closer together,” Wu said of why they weren’t there.
Asked questions about the history of metal detectors at Charlestown High, the district merely said in a statement, “In light of our initial assessment and out of an abundance of caution, the district made the decision to reinstall metal detectors at Charlestown High School.”