Posted on: 4:25 pm, March 22, 2013, by Barrett Tryon, updated on: 05:32pm, March 22, 2013
MERRIAM, Kan. — It’s a case of mistaken identity that could have ended a lot differently for a Merriam, Kan., teen.
Someone called 911 Friday morning and reported three men were wearing camouflage –and armed with rifles — and jumped out of a car and began to run around a home.
When Merriam police showed up, officers were confronted by two people carrying rifles. That’s when one teen pointed the gun at an officer.
Thankfully, the officer noticed a small amount of orange paint on the barrel of the rifle and decided to tell the teen to “drop the gun.” He complied and was taken into custody.
However, when police picked up the rifle they quickly noticed it was an “Airsoft” gun — a non-lethal weapon that shoots [airsoft bb] pellets by compressed air.
The teens said they were practicing for an Airsoft game later in the day and thought the officers were another team.
No charges were filed, police said.
The third-grade student brought an airsoft pellet gun to Thomas Jefferson Elementary on Monday. A teacher discovered the [airsoft] gun and notified administrators, said Mary Ley, a spokeswoman for the school district.
The student was automatically expelled from school for 10 days, after which an appeals hearing will be held to determine whether a student should face the state standard of a one-year expulsion for bringing a [airsoft] gun to school, Ley said.
The incident marks the third time in the last month a Bentonville student has brought a [airsoft] gun to school, Ley said. No one was injured in any of the incidents.
An eighth-grade student at Bentonville’s Washington Junior High School brought an air soft gun to the school with the purpose of selling it to another student in February, according to the school district. A few weeks earlier, a student brought a BB gun to Mary Jones Elementary School, Ley said.
The students involved in those two incidents had their recommended expulsions overturned by Superintendent Michael Poore following an appeals hearing, Ley said.