PALM COAST, Fla. - A 14-year-old student in Flagler County was taken into custody Friday on charges of bringing a loaded gun to school, deputies said.
A teacher at Buddy Taylor Middle School on Belle Terre Parkway in Palm Coast received information that a student had a firearm in his backpack, a news release said. The teacher alerted school administration and school resource Deputy Cory Petty investigated, authorities said.
“I want to point out that the ‘See something, say something’ campaign works. I commend that, combined with the quick actions of our school resource deputies, to bringing a quick resolution to this incident,” Flagler Schools Superintendent James Tager said.
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The teen boy was detained, and a loaded handgun was found in his backpack, deputies said. There was no magazine in the gun, but there was one round in the chamber, the release said.
Investigators said Dewuan Brinson was charged with exhibiting a weapon on school property, grand theft of a firearm and interfering with a school function. He will be booked into the Sheriff Perry Hall Inmate Detention Facility and turned over to the Department of Juvenile Justice.
"This case could have ended in tragedy," Staly said. "I want to commend the student that came forward. I want to commend the teacher that took it seriously and reported it."
“Our number one concern is the safety of our students, and thankfully, we were able to thwart any plans this juvenile may have had before someone was injured during today’s incident,” Sheriff Rick Staly said.
The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office and its Domestic Homeland Security Section were at the scene.
Deputies said the gun was stolen from an unlocked car on April 23rd on Point Pleasant Drive.
“This student now faces multiple felonies for his actions. Make no mistake, the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office takes a zero-tolerance approach to weapons and threats on school campuses. This incident was safely resolved because of the great cooperation between school personnel, students, school resource deputies, the Sheriff’s Office and the systems we have put in place,” Staly said.
Richard Friese, the gun's owner, called the student who reported the gun a hero.
"We had seen an individual breaking into cars around here," he said. "My wife had actually seen him and stopped him from going into the next door neighbors'."
Friese described that person as a teenager. Shortly thereafter, he said he discovered that his gun was missing from his pickup truck.
"Apparently, I unlocked it one time or left it unlocked once, and that was the one time someone broke into it," he said "Society's changed a lot. The kids do weird things now. There is nothing we can do except educate them about what we would like them to do."
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