Gun found at school a case of brother helping brother

DECATUR, Ind. (WANE) A loaded gun found at Bellmont High School early Wednesday, a discovery that prompted a full-scale lockdown of the building, was brought by a student who didn't want his brother to get into trouble, NewsChannel 15 has learned.

According to notification from North Adams Community Schools Operations Director Larry Carty early Wednesday, school authorities were alerted early Wednesday about a firearm that was on the campus. Immediately, the school was placed on lockdown and "action was taken to investigate and to decelerate the event," the notification said.

Carty told NewsChannel 15 that a student had brought the weapon to the high school, and had hidden it in one of the restrooms. Other students saw the weapon and reported it to school authorities, he said.

Police found the loaded gun after a short search, according to Decatur Police Officer Kevin Gerber.

School officials determined that there was "no intent to cause harm in this incident." Carty wrote in the notification that the incident was resolved safely.

The school held an assembly and detailed the situation to the student body, NewsChannel 15 learned. In that assembly, officials said the unidentified student had found his younger brother with the gun on the school bus that morning. Not wanting the brother to get into trouble, the student took the gun and hid it, officials told the student body in the assembly.

It's not clear what became of the student. Gerber said the student will face consequences from the school and the criminal justice system, but he did not explain. Indiana Code allows for a potential charge of Possession of a Firearm on School Property.

The high school building remained on "soft lockdown" while school officials and Decatur Police investigated.

"Safety is of the highest priority for North Adams Community Schools," Carty wrote in the notification. "We wish to thank all students, staff and authorities for responding with due diligence and for maintaining the safety of all individuals."

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